It is a streamlined app for contactless payments, cards and loyalty cards
When Google relaunched Pay back in late 2020, it was to bring all of the company’s financial features into a single app. Contactless payments still exist, but in general, the app’s current direction is towards reward cards, financial tracking, and sending or receiving money from friends. In January, we heard about Google’s plans to build a “comprehensive digital wallet”, and today we get our first look at what that might mean.
Esper.ios Mishaal Rahman shared some screenshots of the new user interface on Twitter. This look brings back the old “Wallet” name, something Google abandoned back in 2018 when it merged it and Android Pay into one service. These screenshots even include last week’s leaked icon pointing to a more comprehensive reconsideration of how Google Pay is currently working than originally expected.
This new version of “Wallet” seems to follow the original plans that the company laid back in January, when it first brought former PayPal director Arnold Goldberg to lead the payment team. Published as a digital wallet for all your cards – payment and more – this new user interface supports “payment cards, loyalty cards and more in one place.” Airline cards, theater tickets, gift cards and transit ticket cards are all displayed throughout the app, with the option to add more as needed.
According to the settings menu, Wallet can automatically withdraw cards and tickets from your Gmail account, another feature currently supported by Google Pay. You can also enable purchase reviews to keep track of your transactions.
This version of Wallet seems to duplicate lots of the contactless features and functions of the current version of Google Pay without the extra tumor. According to Rahman, this user interface is built into Google Play Services, which could point to a new split between Wallet and Pay, effectively returning us to a pre-2018 payment platform on Android.
It’s an interesting idea, and while not everyone will be happy to see two different payment platforms on their devices again, it’s clear that Pay’s plan to compete with apps like Venmo and Mint has not caught on. We’ll have to wait and see when Google is ready to announce this relaunched digital wallet initiative, but with I / O less than a month away, this service may be just around the corner.
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