Google hasn’t been able to expand its September 2015-launched digital wallet platform quite as fast as Apple or Samsung during Android Pay’s first year or so of existence, but now it’s slowly catching up in addition to targeting markets untapped by the search giant’s rivals.
Of the five countries Big G promised to serve back in May “over the coming months”, Russia, Canada, Taiwan and Spain all embraced the wide Android device-supporting mobile payment solution by the end of July.
Now it’s finally time for Brazil to join the party as the first Latin American nation officially welcoming Android Pay as it tries to make contactless payments mainstream. Samsung Pay has been available in the region since July 2016, and all five of Google’s local launch partners in the financial sector are already behind the chaebol’s NFC and MST-powered service.
But Android Pay managed to beat both Samsung and Apple Pay to the punch in Ukraine a few weeks ago, doing the same today in Czech Republic, and before long, in Slovakia, too.
The initial list of supporting Czech banks includes J&T, mBank and Moneta Money Bank, with KB set to expand it sometime soon. Participating stores and restaurants range from Albert, Billa and Lidl supermarkets to H&M clothing outlets and McDonald’s fast food joints.