Google Wallet was one of the first mainstream mobile payment options in the United States, but the launch was marred by lack of broad carrier support initially. A competing platform, SoftCard, may have been partially to blame; it’s a service developed by AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon that competes directly with Google Wallet. Now, facing stiff competition from Apple Pay, Google is looking to revamp its Wallet initiatives with a new version, The Wall Street Journal said Friday.
Google is apparently hoping to relaunch Google Wallet during Google I/O in May, the news outlet said. The Wall Street Journal explains a few of the reasons why Google will continue to face headwinds, however, including Samsung’s new acquisition of LoopPay. With its own service on the horizon, Samsung may not be as quick to adopt Google’s option. “A person familiar with the Samsung-LoopPay deal said big smartphone makers envision few benefits from cooperating with Google Wallet,” The Wall Street Journal reported.
Google has already confirmed it wants a broad reaching wallet that offers more to consumers than the ability to tap-and-pay for goods at checkout counters. That probably includes expanding on its existing offering, which also allows consumers to store reward cards in their digital wallets. Banks may provide some of the support Google Wallet needs, however. The Wall Street Journal said now, with the deployment of Apple Pay, banks are also looking for an option to suit Android users. A recent rumor also suggested Google is interested in acquiring Softcard, which could earn it quick partnerships with U.S. wireless carriers.
Google I/O kicks off on May 28 where, if all goes to plan, we expect to hear more on the Google Wallet front.