Google Wallet now available on most US Android devices, NFC payments still limited

by: Bogdan PetrovanSeptember 17, 2013

google wallet

In spite of the great initial expectations, Wallet has been one of Google’s less successful services, with in-store payments remaining to this day available only on a limited number of devices carried by Sprint and a few smaller operators. One could argue that the blame for this failure belongs to the other three big US carriers, who support Isis, a competing mobile payment service.

Even if in-store payments seem dead in the water for now, Google isn’t willing to give up on Wallet just yet: the company announced a big update to the Android app, which is now available for the vast majority of Android devices in the US. While paying via NFC remains limited to the devices that have supported it until now, users of all devices running Android 2.3 or higher will soon be able to install Google Wallet.

Wallet gains some new features in the update. Foremost, users will be able to send money to any adult person in the United States, provided they have an email address. Money can be sent for free from the Wallet balance or from a bank account, or from a credit or debit card, in which case there’s a small fee in place. This is similar to the Send money through Gmail option that Google began to offer this summer.

Another interesting new feature of Google Wallet for Android is support for loyalty cards. Users can scan the barcodes on loyalty cards or type in their codes, and present the app at checkout for scanning. The new app also features Google Offers coupon integration, as well as a dashboard to track financial activity.

  • Spruce Cycle

    No thanks, cash will suffice.

    • Cole Raney

      People still carry cash?

      • Spruce Cycle

        Frogs do.

      • Jason

        Indeed. What is this cash thing you speak of Spruce?

        • Spruce Cycle

          Cash is that thing that works when the electricity is down.

          • BigL.

            Hmmm drug dealers uses C.A.S.H. Haven’t you guys watching “breaking bad”?

  • Omran Terro

    Google please make all your apps with international availability.

  • chadbot3000

    Not available on ANY of my devices.

    HTC One, Acer A1 810, Acer A200…

  • Todd Grady

    Why still limit NFC usage to a certain number of devices? If we have NFC, let us use it! As usual, Google almost gets it right.

    • iJimaniac

      Something tells me Google would be more than willing to allow any device with NFC use it, but the carriers have to add support to their phones, something that they won’t do

  • Jose

    not working on Tmobile M919

  • Alu Zeros

    great, now cut a deal with the carriers and make nfc payments to all carriers.

  • androidscales

    doesnt work on my samsung S4 I am with ATT

  • bitemeoftn

    Surprisingly enough the new update works on Verizon s3. I’m also rooted running carbon ROM. Not sure if that makes a difference.

  • mrjayviper

    make it happen google in countries that’s not USA! :/

  • chris

    Strange how they have no problem collecting and giving away non US user data…

  • Fantastico

    This app update, and Google’s acquisition of Bump, suggests that NFC has not been the revolutionary technology people thought it would be.

  • Rick Jacobs

    I’m on Verizon so I was surprised to see this pop up on my phone. It appears I can link Google Wallet to my bank account so I can send money(?) however, no NFC card purchases so Verizon is still blocking this feature for their Isis. Google Wallet is still a useless app for me.