Google Wallet is rolling out in six new markets to add more payment options for users, a press release from the tech giant said.
It will be debuting in Azerbaijan, Iceland, Moldova, Qatar, Serbia and South Africa, offering digital item support for things like loyalty cards and boarding passes.
Those in the six new markets will gain the ability to add payment cards to Google Wallet, paying with their Android phones or WearOS devices anywhere the contactless payments are accepted.
The new wallet will let people move “seamlessly” in society and will come with authentication, biometrics and encryption to allow for privacy options.
Moldova, Qatar, Serbia and South Africa will see Google Wallet available immediately on both Android and WearOS, while Azerbaijan and Iceland will only see the wallet on Androids for now, with WearOS capability coming later.
The rollout of Google Wallet has come at the expense of Google Pay on many devices, with the wallet rolling out earlier this month in 40 countries in Europe and the Middle East.
The update saw Google expanding the options from Google Pay, letting users make contactless payments and also store various other things like digital cards, health passes, event tickets, hotel keys and COVID-19 vaccination cards and test records.
PYMNTS wrote that the tech giant looked to be putting its bets on these sorts of new integrations to make the wallet a multipurpose super-app for identifications that could compete with various rivals. This can be seen as a matter of tradition — monetary systems have always used tech to identify and authenticate payments, including signatures, passwords and identification numbers.
Google Wallet’s goal is to be an authentication app using tech that has become common in letting people access workplaces, unlock their cars and more, using APIs for every functionality to expand usage.
It’s become a trend, with the U.S. and Canada seeing on-phone ID solutions primarily replacing physical cards for students at universities, and digital car keys becoming more popular in the past few years.
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