Google on Wednesday introduced some big new features to its Wallet app for iOS and Android, including the ability to request money from friends and family. The updates bring some badly needed functionality to a pretty bare bones app, further turning Google Wallet into a central hub for organizing your finances.
Now, users can store their gift cards in Wallet in addition to loyalty cards and offers. That’ll be pretty handy after your birthday; when you go to the store you got a gift card to, simply bring it up in the Wallet app and the cashier can scan it at checkout. Simple, and as the images show, very intuitive and easy. Wallet will dedicate an entire category to your gift cards, which show up in a carded layout complete with company name, price and the date your last synced the card.
Some gift cards will even ping you when you’re near stores—supported stores include Nike, Best buy, AMC, Sephora and more—encouraging you to spend that money.
Additionally, you can easily request money from friends and family. Once your request is sent, the person you sent the request to will get a notification, and can then pay you back right on the spot. And if they don’t pay you in a timely fashion, you can send them a friendly reminder to, Hey, pay me back. The request money function even extends to Gmail.
Finally, if someone does request money from you, you can send it for free through the Wallet app by using your debit card. Hopefully you don’t owe your friends too much money, because the new Wallet update makes it almost too easy to send people money. The updates for iOS and Android are rolling out later this week for U.S. users, so be on the look out for those.