Google sees all these cell phones in the world and has decided to let people pay for things with them in face-to-face transactions, much like how credit cards are used. To that end, the tech giant has just launched “Google Wallet.”
It uses “Near Field Communication,” which is a wireless technology that works over very short distances. Quite simply, once the cashier rings up a purchase, the buyer merely waves their phone in front of a sensor to pay.
Right now, however, the service is very limited. For starters, it’s currently Google Prepaid Card or Citi MasterCard only, so it’ll only work at stores with MasterCard PayPass stations. Visa, American Express and Discover are all working with Google to get onboard, though.
The other major limitation at the moment is that it only works on the Nexus S 4G phone on Sprint. Going forward, developers insist everything from loyalty cards to tickets to door keys will be used in the same way as part of “Google Wallet.”