When Google unveiled Wallet/Offers at NYC, Google touted the openness of their new system. Naturally, someone asked about what this meant for non-Android phones.
In terms of iPhone, RIM, Microsoft we will partner with everyone,” Google VP of Commerce Stephanie Tilenius said. Of course, that depends on two things:
- the inclusion of NFC chips in their phones.
- the willingness to work with Google on this system.
The former seems to be a sure thing at this point. The latter? Umm…Yeah”¦
For months, it has been widely rumored that Apple was working on their own NFC solution into a future version of the iPhone (which maybe the next next version…maybe). But it is coming, and Apple is likely going to have their own payment solution. The same is probably true for Microsoft and RIM. E-commerce with NFC is a huge opportunity massive, really partnering with a rival on it will only piss off stockholders.
Possibly knowing this, Tilenius boasted with the big stats. In the past six months, Android is the leading mobile operating system, she noted. They have 50 percent of the market now. She reiterated that Google is making a huge bet on NFC and they’re willing to work with any partner on this.
While Google only mentioned it in passing, apparently, there will be a sticker that can be applied to any device (on the back or where ever a customer wanted to put it) that can hold the information for one card. This sticker, when tapped on an NFC device, then works with Google’s cloud and an app on your phone to handle payments.
In other words, if the other players were willing to accept a Google Wallet app on their devices, a somewhat limited (again, one card) version of this system could work pretty easily without hardware modification. Next question: would Apple approve such an app?