Yesterday Google announced that it was giving their mobile payment system, Google Wallet a chance against Apple Pay by striking a deal with 3 major US wireless providers (AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile) to make Google Wallet the pre-installed NFC payment software on Android phones running Kit Kat or higher. Under this agreement they will be buying some of the technology and intellectual properties of the not well received Softcard and integrate them into Google Wallet. The most important part would be the competing tap-and-pay aspect that is making Apple Pay popular.
With this move for Google, there has to be some ripples. Recently Samsung, acquired LoopPay with will give them the ability to make their own NFC wallet system for their Android phones, which are the most popular phone out there. This means that some phones (say a Verizon Galaxy s6) could come with 2 NFC wallet systems pre-installed and would cause confusion. According to the Wall Street Journal Google is down playing this saying that there is plenty of room in the mobile payment market and that they can all coexist.
The last time Samsung and Google tried to coexist, it worked fine for a while, but eventually backfired for Samsung. Their security systems, Knox, was better than what Google was using and was widely accepted by everyone as better security. Google agreed, and formed a partnership with Samsung and eventually agreed to add some of the Knox security code to an upcoming update. This is more of a win/lose for Samsung as it would blur their advancement in enterprise security and not make them a fore runner.
Only time will tell if either one of these will be able to stop the stampeed of Apple Pay, in which Apple says that a big chunk of mobile payments. The example given during their investor call was that of the people using mobile payments at Panera Bread, 80% of them used Apple Pay. Hopfully the two do not have a negative effect and cancel each other out of the NFC payment race.
What do you think? Will you use NFC payments? Can Google crack the Apple hold? Comment below.