We’ve discussed in the past how businesses are using mobile applications and cell phone attachments to receive payments from customers using credit cards, but today we are going to be talking about the opposite of that. I’m sure by now, if you have a finger on the pulse of the technology industry, that you have heard of Google Wallet. Well Google Wallet is really starting to show its worth now that more Android phones are packing NFC technology. So lets take an in depth look at what Google Wallet is all about.
What is Google Wallet?
Google wallet is a technology created by Google using a technology called NFC (Near Field Communication) that is built into your smartphone. The NFC chip, along with Google Wallet, allows smartphone owners to make payments at participating retailers, restaurants and other stores, by simply bumping their cellphone against the NFC Reader. The NFC readers are marked with either a Google Wallet logo or a MasterCard PayPass logo. Google Wallet will allow you to use credit cards, coupons, store loyalty cards, etc without actually swiping each card. Instead, you’ll simply tap your phone up to a payment receiver to complete a transaction.
How to Activate Google Wallet?
First, you’ll need an NFC compatible Android phone and you’ll also need to have the Google Wallet app installed. Next you will need to activate a credit card with Google Wallet. This is just like entering your credit card information on any form you have filled out on the internet. Card numbers, type of card, and personal information. Google then runs this information through the credit card company and FirstData, the backend of most of the financial and bank industry. Once activated, Google will send you an email with an activation code, enter that code into the app, and you should be good to go!
How To Make A Transaction?
This will probably be the easiest instructions I ever give out. You open the Google Wallet app, type in your 4 digit pass code to access your wallet and swipe it over the sensor. That’s it. Google Wallet does the rest for you.
Big Question…How Does Security Work With Google Wallet?
Google has taken extra precautions in developing the security for Google Wallet. They say not only is security “baked in” Google Wallet, but they added extra security around it to keep users privacy, and currency safe.
- It complies with all PayPass standards.
- If your phone is off or your screen is dark, NFC is disabled.
- On top of that, if the screen is on, NFC is enabled, but the secure element is off, making it impossible to do a transaction.
- Only when the app is open and you’ve entered your four digit PIN, will it work.
- Google sends information to several secure channels for verification.
Google also hinted at the “secret sauce” that they are using to beef up security even more. An NFC chip + Secure Element, which is almost a miniature computer of its own. “Google Wallet stores your encrypted payment card credentials on a computer chip on your phone called the Secure Element,” writes Google. “Think of the Secure Element as a separate computer, capable of running programs and storing data. The Secure Element is separate from your Android phone’s memory. The chip is designed to only allow trusted programs on the Secure Element itself to access the payment credentials stored therein. The secure encryption technology of MasterCard PayPass protects your payment card credentials as they are transferred from the phone to the contactless reader.”
Why do you think Google Wallet will be so important to consumers and businesses alike?