Yesterday Google announced Android Pay, its new mobile payment initiative. Of course, Android Pay isn’t Google’s first mobile payments effort, with Google Wallet having launched way back in May 2011. However, just because Android Pay is coming to take on mobile payments, that doesn’t mean that Google Wallet is going away completely.
Google has announced that it’s working on an all-new Google Wallet app for both Android and iOS. The refreshed version of Wallet will let anyone with a U.S. debit card to send and receive money “within minutes” for free. When you receive money, you’ll be able to decide whether you want that cash to go straight into your bank account or if you want it to be ready to spend in stores using a Google Wallet card. It’s also worth noting that Google Wallet will work even if the person that you’re sending cash to doesn’t have the Google Wallet app.
Google Wallet launched with the goal of helping Android users to pay for goods and services using contactless payments, but the service never really managed to gain much traction with consumers. However, now that mobile payments are growing in popularity thanks to services like Apple Pay, Google has decided that it’s time to refresh its payments offering with some more competitive features and a name that ties it to Android. As a result, it looks like Google Wallet is going to become more of a PayPal competitor for sending and receiving money with other people.