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Is Google Wallet the Same as Google Pay? We’ll Explain

At Google I/O 2022 on Wednesday, the tech large introduced the discharge of Google Wallet for Android: a web-based pockets in your cost playing cards, boarding passes and extra. Sound acquainted? Nicely, sure, as a result of Google Pockets has been round for over a decade in numerous iterations.

Is Google Pockets changing Google Pay? Will Google Pay nonetheless be round? And what is the distinction between them? Here is the whole lot it’s essential to know concerning the historical past of Google Pockets, what meaning in your contactless funds and what sort of info, other than bank cards, you need to use on this new version of Google Pockets.

This is not the primary time that Google Pockets has been round

Google originally launched Google Wallet back in 2011 as its preliminary cell cost service app, permitting Android customers to faucet their supported telephones towards readers at choose outlets to make funds.

This primary iteration of Google Pockets was very restrictive. It solely labored on the Nexus cellphone and required customers to enroll in a Citi MasterCard account or get a Google Pay as you go Card to make funds. It was a ache to make use of, requiring you to open the app and enter a pin to entry your playing cards. About 4 years later, Google Pockets was succeeded by Android Pay.

Google Wallet making a payment.

Google Pockets first launched again in 2011.

CNET/Marguerite Reardon

Android Pay finally changed Google Pockets

Android Pay was released during Google I/O in 2015 as a substitute for Google Pockets. The brand new service allowed Android customers to make contactless funds by their telephones, which was precisely what Google Pockets did. So why create Android Pay?

In brief: It was simpler to make use of. In contrast to Google Pockets, Android Pay did not require you to obtain an extra app as a result of it was built-in, so all you needed to do was unlock your cellphone and place it towards a terminal to make a cost.

It additionally arrived after the 2014 debut of Apple Pay and contactless funds on the iPhone 6, which can have offered much more purpose for Google to advertise that Android telephones already had tap-to-pay functionality.

Using Android Pay to make a payment.

Android Pay changed Google Pockets in 2015.

James Martin/CNET

After which Google Pockets tried to grow to be PayPal

Though Android Pay did change Google Pockets for contactless funds, the latter model continued to exist as a peer-to-peer payments service à la PayPal, Venmo and Money App. All you wanted to do to ship cash to family and friends was enter a linked e mail handle or cellphone quantity.

For those who had been the one receiving cash, you possibly can withdraw the cash on to your checking account, or you possibly can use a Google Pockets Card to make in-store funds or withdraw money from an ATM. The Google Pockets Card was finally discontinued; Google Pockets was merged with Android Pay.

Google Pockets + Android Pay = Google Pay

In 2018, Google introduced a merger between Google Pockets and Android Pay, creating Google Pay. This service might be the one you might be most aware of should you commonly use an Android cellphone for contactless purchases. Google Pay took options from each companies: contactless funds in-store and peer-to-peer funds on-line in a single app.

Google Pay finally took over as the first “pockets” for Android customers, changing into a hub for flight passes, transit playing cards, occasion tickets, health club memberships, present playing cards and extra. It additionally changed Chrome’s autofill characteristic, permitting Android customers to make use of Google Pay for on-line purchases. 

Google Pay on phone.

Google Pockets and Android Pay finally turned Google Pay.

Taylor Martin/CNET

There was additionally one thing known as Google Pay Ship

Though Google Pockets and Android Pay merged, it took just a few months for the peer-to-peer cost options to make their means over to Google Pay, and so Google redesigned Google Pockets into Google Pay Ship for sending and receiving funds on-line.

Google discontinued Google Pay Ship in 2020 as the web cost characteristic was finally ported over to Google Pay.

Google Pay was then discontinued and redesigned

Google had been testing out a redesigned model of Google Pay in India, often called Google Tez. This new model of Google Pay provided a number of new options, equivalent to in-app messaging, customized affords, transaction historical past, receipt scanning and way more. It additionally began charging small proportion charges for debit card transfers.

Ultimately this model of Google Pay appeared as a brand new app within the Google Play Retailer, whereas the older model of Google Pay caught round as nicely. In April 2021, Google discontinued the outdated Google Pay model within the US.

And now Google Pockets is again

Throughout Google I/O 2022, Google announced the return of Google Wallet for Android and Put on OS, which very similar to Google Pay, means that you can retailer debit and bank cards, flight passes, occasion tickets, vaccination playing cards and extra lately, digital IDs and driver licenses.

screenshot from Google I/O May 2022 presentation

Google Pockets was introduced at Google I/O 2022.


If I am within the US, which service ought to I be utilizing?

Google Pockets will fully change Google Pay, through replace, in 39 nations, together with Mexico, Japan, Australia, Honk Kong and France.

For those who’re within the US or Singapore, Google Pockets will grow to be the first Android cost service and pockets the place you retailer your resort keys, driver’s license, boarding passes and extra, in addition to make contactless funds. Google Pay will stick round, however solely as a service to ship funds to family and friends. 

And lastly, customers in India is not going to obtain the Google Pockets replace and as an alternative proceed to make use of Google Pay as their on a regular basis digital pockets.

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