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Google Wallet and why you should use it

In 2022, digital wallets accounted for half of the money spend with online retail.

If you're looking for a simple way to buy stuff online without having to enter your payment details every time, then Google Wallet might be right up your street. It's easy to set up and works well with Android devices.

Some card issuers, like 1derful, are now instantly provisioning payment cards that you can use immediately. We are able to achieve this by using Google Wallet and Apple pay to provide digital card and loyalty details to your phone. We also support issuing physical cards, but not all of the brands that partner with us like to issue physical cards anymore.

Google wallet is also helpful when shopping online. You can take a photo of your card (if you have a physical one issued). This will then be available when shopping online; and in person via your phone. As phone battery capacities grow, more and more people are choosing to shop with digital wallets.

Changes in spending behaviour is driving digital wallet adoption

As shown in the following image, new payment categories such as social are becoming increasingly important. When combining these tech savvy ways of making payments, its not hard to see how having a digital wallet can add a lot of value (as compared to setting up card payments details in all of the different online platforms). Amazon might dominate e-commerce but in terms of interest payment channels they are one of many.

NFC ability in mobile devices are another driving force behind why digital wallet adoption is growing rapidly. There is now 59% market adoption for NFC devices, which facilitates the use of digital wallets in brick and mortar stores (without needing to do QR codes). The importance of this is that many terminals provide NFC now, but QR codes weren't strongly rolled out (perhaps due to requiring stores to display them explicitly).

What Is Google Wallet?

Google Wallet is a mobile payment system developed by Google. It allows users to store their debit cards in the cloud so they can use them anywhere without having to carry around physical cards. It can replace transit tickets, event tickets, loyalty cards, credit cards, gift cards, vaccine cards, insurance cards and other generic passes; by enabling contactless payments (with wireless solutions such as NFC) between the phone and the payment terminal.

Google has however had many similarly named products in this area. So lets look at where Google Wallet has come from:

  • Google Wallet has been around since 2011
  • In 2015 Android Pay was introduced. It had the benefit of coming with Android itself and didn't require a separate app.
  • In 2018 Google wallet and Android Pay were merged to become Google Pay.
  • In 2022, Google have made Google Wallet the way to pay (with virtual cards). Google Pay is still around (for the US and Singapore), however it is aimed at sending money to friends and family.

You can download Google Wallet for Android by clicking on the app store icon below. It works for mobile phone and other android devices such as watches

How do you pay using Google Wallet?

Once you've downloaded the app (iOS, Android), you'll need to register your bank account details.

Then, when you shop online, just tap the 'Google Wallet' button at checkout. You'll be asked to confirm your purchase by entering your mobile number.

This will allow the merchant to send you a text message containing a code to verify your transaction.

What is Google Wallet like?

In-store payments

The following video is what a Google Pay in-store experience is like. Although this article is speaking to Google Wallet, the user experience and in-store considerations are the very similar. Merchants supporting Google pay support Google Wallet.

Google Pay verification code

You may be asked to enter a verification code for security reasons. In this case you will want to read these instructions on how to enter a verification code.

Where can I buy things with Google Wallet?

There is a growing list of retailers supporting Google Wallet. You can see them here:

Other features

  • Digital Wallets (including Google Wallet) have the ability to show you expired cards. This is helpful, as various cards like drivers licenses etc can expire and might not be cards that you look at very often.
  • QR based passes (often emailed) can be centralised into Google Wallet. You can also share that event pass into other google things such as Gmail, Google Maps and Google Calendar.

Are there any gotchas to setting up Google Wallet?

Google Wallet has been available since 2011, so there's plenty of time for people to use it. However, some people still aren't aware of how it works. Here are three reasons why you might not be able to use Google Wallet yet.

  1. You haven't signed up for the service yet. To use Google Wallet, you need to sign up for it first. This means creating a Google account and linking it to your bank account. Once you've done this, you'll be ready to start using Google Wallet.
  2. You don't have a smartphone. Google Wallet isn't compatible with smartphones running Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), iOS 4.0 (iPhoneOS 4.0), or Windows Phone 7.5.
  3. You don't have any money in your Google Wallet account.You can only use Google Wallet when you have money in your Google Wallet balance. So, if you don't have any money, you won't be able to use Google wallet.
  4. You will need to agree to the terms and conditions of your card provider to use it. The 1derful terms are here

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