Google Wallet – An app which can replace your wallet!
We do not need to be carrying around ten gadgets anymore because today's smartphones can do just about everything; they can play music, they offer internet access and have GPS receivers. Google is a company which constantly and frequently invests on innovative and practical ideas, their latest app however is one huge (note: many would use the word crazy) step; Google Wallet is here, with the company aiming to replace your physical money and credit cards with just an App on your smartphone!
According to Google, the company's vision is nothing short of world domination, wanting to replace your actual paper money, coins and credit cards with a mere Android App.
How does it all work? It is fairly simple. Google Wallet relies on Near Field Communication, or NFC, to contact a point-of-sale terminal through your smartphone. All you need to do is take out your smartphone, assuming it does have a NFC chip, get it close (less than 10cm from it) to the terminal and a few taps on your phone's screen. And the greatest part is that it costs nothing to the user or the merchant – for the time being. Google plans on making profits from their Google Offers and advertising.
And of course, there is a catch; there always is a catch. In this case, there are several problems Google has to deal with. First, NFC-able smartphones are not exactly mainstream. They are using a well established and existent infrastructure, the Mastercard Paypass Network, which is very commonly found in the US; but few people actually use it in the US and most of the world has never even heard of it yet. And last but not least, security is a major concern; Google is very reassuring about security but technology enthusiasts do know that no matter how well something is locked, it can always be unlocked.
And what if your phone's battery goes out or if it gets damaged or stolen? We bet that you would be wishing for a real 20$ bill in your back pocket to take a taxi back home.