Android Pay Now Supports In-App Purchases; Payment Service Coming to Australia in 2016
Recently, the way we shop has been revolutionized. No longer do we have to swipe our cards or carry around wads of cash; NFC (Near-Field Communication) technology allows us to pay for things wirelessly with our smart cards and smartphones. Aiding that are services like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and even LG. Also available is Android Pay, which is a rebranding of Google Wallet. Having launched a full year after Apple Pay, the payment platform has been playing catch-up but this new set of announcements could help.
First up is the news that Android Pay now supports in-app purchases. While the payment platform was previously only good for buying things in person, from here on out, users will be able to “speed through mobile checkout within many of your favorite Android apps.” Unfortunately, the rolling out of this feature is extremely limited, as not only is it only available in the United States (for now) but it’s also limited to a handful of apps. These apps include DoorDash, lyft, houzz, Hotel Tonight, Jet.com, printicular, SpotHero, Spring, Instacart, Fancy, handy, JackThreads, Vinted, ParkWhiz, OpenTable, and Wish.
There’s also a savings scheme in place to encourage people to use Android Pay within those apps, as opposed to their usual methods. For a “limited time” only, using Android Pay will bag you $20 off on OpenTable dining, $10 off your Lyft ride, $10 off DoorDash and 30% off Vinted. Those discounts won’t last for long, true, but with a regular rotation of deals as more apps offer Android Pay support, people will ditch their traditional payment methods in their droves as using Google’s payment platform lessens the hurt on their wallet.
Meanwhile, Google also seemed pleased as punch this week to announce that Android Pay will be arriving in Australia during the first half of 2016. While it’s a shame that the release window isn’t any more specific than that, Google says that “we’re working closely with many of Australia’s major financial institutions — including ANZ, Westpac, Bank of Melbourne, Bank of South Australia, Bendigo Bank, Cuscal, ING DIRECT, Macquarie Bank, and St. George — with the aim of bringing Android Pay to their card holders in 2016, and will continue to work with more banks throughout the year.”
Visa and MasterCard credit and debit cards will be supported (though Google is “also working with eftpos to support their cards in Android Pay”) and the company explains that “Aussies will be able to use Android Pay everywhere contactless payments are accepted. Many leading retailers are working with us to support the launch of Android Pay — including 7-Eleven, Brumby’s Bakery, Coles Express, Coles Supermarkets, Crust Gourmet Pizza, Domino’s Pizza Enterprises Limited, Donut King, Gloria Jean’s Coffees, McDonald’s, Michel’s Patisserie, Pizza Capers, and Telstra.” Apple Pay isn’t yet available in the land down under, so Android Pay could really increase its worldwide market share this way.
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