Google drops NFC requirement for Wallet

Dylan Bushell-Embling
19 Sep 2013

Google has launched a revamped version of mobile payment service Google Wallet for Android that no longer requires an NFC chip to use some of its features.

The internet giant announced it had added the ability to send money to people in the US via an email address.

The new version will also be able to scan in certain loyalty cards and redeem offers through the Wallet app at checkout.

Rethink Wireless' Caroline Gabriel suggests that this could mark a new setback for NFC's chance of making it as the default m-payment standard.

Google has been the biggest backer of the technology, and the launch follows two other setbacks – Apple deciding not to support NFC in its newest iPhones, and PayPal's recent launch of a mobile payment system based on Bluetooth LE (low energy).

Google doesn't seem to be stepping away from NFC altogether however – it's announcement states that “we also have more NFC-enabled devices on the horizon as we continue to invest in NFC with our partners.”

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