Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Google First With NFC But We Still Need An iPhone With NFC To Make Mobile Payments Ubiquitous


I saw my first Google Wallet payment system over the weekend at a gas station of all places.  There are probably more in my area that I am not aware of.  But let’s be honest, Google, for most folks, is about search and gmail.  Androids they know about but that’s about it.  And even with the attention given to the Galaxy Nexus with its NFC feature, there simply isn’t enough of them out there for merchants to begin rolling out mobile payment systems.

Even a leading Android blog, Droid-Life, admits that until Apple has an iPhone featuring NFC will mobile payment actually begin to take off.  Just ask Starbucks about their app for mobile payment.  It’s taken off as more and more iPhone users embrace it.  Helps that you get rewards for using it.

Unless Google is willing to “pay” or reward users to use NFC to pay for goods and services and has enough devices with NFC capability to reach a critical point, it’ll be a long time before I can pay for my bean burritos at Taco Bell or my nephews’ Happy Meals at MacDonald’s.

But we’ll definitely get there faster if Apple adds a NFC chip to the next iPhone and they begin to flood the market by the tens of millions.

So, if you’re a mobile warrior looking to leave your credit or debit cards at home, I personally look forward to the day when I can leave my wallet at home, then let’s hope Apple comes through for us soon.

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