Looks like the rumors of Google and Softcard teaming up were true.
Google has announced that it’s teaming up with Softcard, the mobile payment service founded by AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon. The deal will see Google Wallet come preinstalled on all Android phones running Android 4.4 KitKat or higher that are sold by AT&T, T-Mo, and Verizon. Preinstalled versions of Wallet will begin appearing later in 2015.
Google says that it’s acquired “some exciting technology and intellectual property” from Softcard as part of this deal. Exactly what Google is getting is unknown, but Google says that the deal will “make Google Wallet better.”
Remember the uproar in late 2012 when the Verizon version of the Galaxy Nexus didn’t officially support Google Wallet? Today’s news is quite a 180 from that situation, and the deal is a big deal for Google because it’ll get Wallet right in front of consumers that buy phones on Android 4.4 or higher, which is most Android products nowadays. And with Apple Pay growing and Samsung prepping its own wallet service, this Softcard deal is exactly what Google needed.