Google Wallet has found itself in the news a bunch lately, but more as a secondary player in stories than the primary focus. Instead, it’s been Apple Pay taking the spotlight, and when retailers reacted to the launch of Apple’s mobile payment service by shutting off the NFC readers at their POS terminals, Google Wallet ended up suffering collateral damage. It’s almost an indignity to Google’s service that its use was just as much in violation of agreements between merchants and MCX, yet Wallet had been operational for years without anyone batting an eyelash – and it took the arrival of Apple’s payment solution for these companies to take notice. In light of all that, tonight’s news is a nice change of pace for Wallet fans, as we’ve got a Wallet story that has nothing to do with Apple Pay at all: Google’s got a new update for Wallet incoming, with some new features and a bold Material Design refresh.
The app’s snazzed-up user interface is the star of this update, and with the version counter jumping all the way from 2.0 to 7.0, you had better believe that means an extensive overhaul. Material Design is the name of the game, with Wallet picking up the same sort of refinements we’ve been witnessing coming to other Google apps as well as Android 5.0 Lollipop itself. That means bold colors, a clean layout, and updated animations and icons.
Feature-wise, there’s not a ton of new content here, but at least one new tool manages to surface, letting users protect their physical Google Wallet cards by easily locking or outright canceling a card in the event of loss or theft.
Be on the lookout for Wallet 7.0 arriving as an update on your Android phone or tablet soon.
Update: Google’s confirmed some additional features present in this release, including new low-balance alerts and the ability to setup automatic transfers.
Source: Android Police