Google flips the switch on Android Pay

Google’s got a new payment system incoming, and recent rumors suggested we’d see Android Pay finally go live next week. Overnight we saw the debut of a new Google Wallet app, which felt like it helped support that idea that Android Pay was nearly ready to debut. Well, it turns out that’s more true than we guessed, as we’re not waiting another week at all: today Google announced the formal start of Android Pay.

Access to Android Pay will arrive gradually over the next few days, and current Wallet users will see it land as an update to that app – that explains why we saw this new Wallet release arrive as an all-new app, rather than an upgrade to the existing one ( vs. If you’re new to this whole mobile payment scene and are looking to get started directly with Android Pay, Google says the app should hit the Play Store in a few days – right now it still shows up as Wallet.

We’ll also start seeing Android Pay come pre-installed on NFC-enabled phones from the majority of US carriers (AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon). Considering past resistance to Wallet, that’s a welcome change.

Functionally, though, this should be business as usual for those of you familiar with Wallet: link your card to your account, then tap and pay at your convenience. New bank partners are coming soon, but many of you should have no trouble getting started with Android Pay right from the get-go. Even if your card doesn’t work with Android Pay just yet, Wallet should still function while Google negotiates with your bank.

Source: Google

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Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bits Read more about Stephen Schenck!