Google unveils Google Wallet and Google Offers for mobile payments

google unveils wallet and offers for mobile payments stephani lock security

At a press conference in New York moments ago, Google officially announced Google Wallet, an open near-field communications platform, and Google Offers, a deal’s program that will work with the Google Wallet. Partnering with Mastercard, First Data, Sprint, Citi Bank, Google plans to let you take everything in your wallet and move it to your phone with an easy-to-use application. The goal is for all credit cards, store loyalty programs, and coupons to eventually be compatible with the Google Wallet system, which lets you tap your phone at a pay spot to complete a transaction, much like MasterCard’s PayPass technology, which has been in use for some years now. The technology platform will be open for RIM, Apple, and other competitors to use, as long as they integrate NFC chips into their phones.

Field testing will begin testing in New York and San Francisco (and Portland for Google Offers), and it should launch everywhere this summer. The only Android phone currently equipped with the NFC chip necessary to use this technology is the Samsung Nexus S, but most upcoming Android phones will supposedly integrate the chip. According to Google, more than 120,000 U.S. merchant locations are already equipped to begin using this technology.

Retailers like Subway, Macy’s Walgreens, Toys R Us, and Noah’s Bagels have already signed onboard. The Wallet supports multiple credit cards, multiple store loyalty cards, and uses passwords, encryption, physical proximity, and a lot of other “special sauce” to ensure that the process is actually safer and more secure than any other digital payment system. Google claims that it is actually more secure than having a real wallet. Of course, a real wallet doesn’t run low on batteries.

Google Offers will be similar to Groupon-style deal sites and will integrate into the Wallet ecosystem.

We’ll have a separate post explaining how the whole system works shortly.

Smart Home

Walmart slashes prices on Google Home during its Presidents’ Day sale

Walmart slashes prices on Google Home during its Presidents' Day sale. Whether you're taking your first step in configuring a smart home or expanding to every room, Walmart has excellent sale prices for all the key components.
Smart Home

Language barrier? Psh. Here's how to make your Google Home an ace translator

You can now use interpreter mode on your Google Home devices. This means, you can use your Google Home device to translate conversations in real-time. Here's how to use interpreter mode.
Mobile

Google might release a smartwatch and multiple Pixel phones in 2019

Google seems to have a lot planned for 2019. According to a report, Google is planning on releasing multiple new Pixel phones, a smartwatch, a new Google Home, and a Nest Security camera this year.
Smart Home

Google Home Mini vs. Amazon Echo Dot: Which smart home speaker is better?

We put the two most popular smart home speakers -- the Google Home Mini and the 3rd generation Amazon Echo Dot -- together and tested them on appearance, audio, and abilities. So which should you buy? Find out how they did in our showdown.
Mobile

Stop buying old tablets, says Samsung, buy the new Galaxy Tab S5e instead

Samsung has launched the Galaxy Tab S5e -- the E is for Essential -- a reasonably priced tablet that includes many of the features we like from the Tab A 10.5, and the Tab S4. Here's what you need to know.
Mobile

Bag yourself a bargain with the best budget tablets under $200

The battle for your budget tablet affections is really ramping up. Which tablet, costing less than $200, should be commanding your attention? We take a look at some different options for the budget-conscious.
Mobile

OnePlus 6T vs. Honor View 20: We compare the cameras in these ‘flagship killers’

For less than $600, you can buy either the OnePlus 6T or the Honor View 20, two extremely capable smartphones with plenty of exciting features. But which one has the best camera? We found out on a recent trip to France.
Wearables

Focals succeed where Google Glass fumbled (but do we really need smartglasses?)

It’s been seven years since Google took the wraps off Google Glass. Now, we’re finally getting a modern-day equivalent we want to wear. North’s Focals combine subtle style with an intuitive interface to craft smartglasses you’ll…
Home Theater

Hi-res streaming audio service Qobuz arrives in U.S., threatens Tidal’s monopoly

For several years, Tidal enjoyed a monopoly on hi-res music streaming in the U.S. Now, French company Qobuz is here to offer some competition with a variety of monthly plans starting at $10 a month.
Mobile

The best Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus cases to keep your titanic phone safe

The new Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is a gorgeous device, with one of the best dual-lens cameras we've ever seen. Keep your titanic device safe and scratch-free with the best Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus cases.
Mobile

How to perform a reverse image search in Android or iOS

You can quickly use Google to search, and reverse search, images on a PC or laptop, but did you know it's almost as easy to do in Android and iOS? We explain how to do it here, whether you want to use Chrome or a third-party app.
Mobile

The best Honor View 20 cases to keep your midrange beauty intact

With power to rival flagships, great looks, and a stunning camera, the Honor View 20 is an excellent phone -- but it still needs protection from hazards. Here are some of the best Honor View 20 cases.
Mobile

Samsung's Unpacked draws near. Here's what we know about the Galaxy S10 so far

It won't be long now. With 2019 underway, the Samsung Galaxy S10 is almost here. Before it arrives, here's absolutely everything you need to know about all three of Samsung's next flagships.
Mobile

Gorilla Glass 6 will cover the Xiaomi Mi 9's AMOLED screen

Xiaomi's next major smartphone release will be the Mi 9, and the company hasn't held back in giving us a good look at the phone, revealing the design, the camera, and a stunning color.