Although you’ll probably use Google Pay primarily in shops, it’s also useful for in-app purchases. When you’re about to purchase something in an app that supports the service, you’ll see a prompt appear for Google Pay. At the moment, Google has listed more than a dozen apps that support in-app purchases with Google Pay including Lyft, OpenTable, Hotel Tonight, Instacart, and Etsy. Most recently, more companies have signed on with Google Pay, at its launch, such as Airbnb, Postmates, Fandango, and Dice.
If you make purchases via the Chrome Browser app on your phone, you’re in luck. Google is adding support for Google Pay for certain sites, making the checkout process less of a hassle. It currently works with a handful of sites such as Groupon and 1-800-Flowers. The integration with Visa Checkout and Masterpass is sure to boost the number of sites that support Google Pay as well.
Google Pay support on Wear OS expands
Google Pay is expanding on Wear OS, previously known as Android Wear. Previously, only users in the U.S. and the U.K. were able to use Google Pay on their smartwatches, but now that functionality is expanding to Australia, Spain, and Canada. Users in Australia can also use their NFC-capable Wear OS devices with Opal to pay for single-ride tickets on some train and ferry lines.
We expect that Google Pay support for Wear OS will continue in the future.
Google merges Android Pay and Google Wallet
For those that have Android Pay and Google Wallet installed on their devices, the apps have now turned into Google Pay and Google Pay Send, respectively. Soon, Google Pay Send’s peer-to-peer transactions will be available in the main Google Pay app, and it’s unclear if that means Google will retire the former Wallet app in the future.
With Google Pay, there aren’t any significant differences from the Android Pay app. You can add all supported debit or credit cards as well as make contact-less payments. The app offers one new feature that provides a list of supported retailers nearby, based specifically on your shopping patterns. You can still use Google Pay wherever Android Pay is accepted.
Google Pay made its debut — as Android Pay — on the global stage when it launched in the U.K. in May 2016, and the service has slowly continued to expand since. Because the list of countries that support Google Pay grows constantly, this list is not conclusive. To find the most up to date list of Google Pay regions, head over to the Google Pay Help Page.
- WorldRemit, an international transfer service in 125, begins to use Google Pay. Users can transfer funds around the world for a small foreign exchange rate markup and processing fee.
- London-based TransferWise also works with Google Pay. TransferWise works in more than 50 countries around the world and allows you to hold and manage money in 27 different currencies.
- Google Pay is available in Canada. You can check out the full list of institutions on Google’s site.
- Google Pay is now supported in Taiwan. Check out Google’s site for a list of participating institutions. A growing list of retailers are supporting Google Pay including Carrefour, A-Mart, RT-Mart, Pxmart, Taipei 101, Pacific Sogo Department Store, Starbucks, and Watsons.
- If you live in the United Kingdom, you can now use Google Pay on your Android device. Here’s a list of banks that support Google Pay. Retailers that accept Google Pay payments include Costa Coffee and Starbucks, Boots, Waitrose, Aldi, Superdrug, and KFC. Various shopping apps such as Deliveroo, Fancy, Kickstarter, Zara, Takeaway.com, and Hotel Tonight offer Google Pay as a payment option. You can also use Google Pay for public transit payments.
- Google Pay is now available in Russia. Check out the Google Pay blog for a full list of supporting financial institutions.
- Google Pay has made its way to Belgium. According to a blog post from Google, the service is available in 85,000 banks and supports six major banks BNP, Fintro, Hello Bank, KBC, KBC Brussels, and CBC.
- Google Pay is now supported in Japan. In Japan, Google Pay is only supported by an eMoney service called Rakuten Edy and a prepaid card service called Nanaco. That said, Rakuten Edy is huge in Japan and accepted at thousands of retailers.
- Ireland has joined the Google Pay club. The contactless payment system is available at thousands of retail locations across the country. For the most up to date list of participating retailers, check out Google’s support page.
- Google Pay is now available in New Zealand. Many of Bank of New Zealand’s card support the service and you’ll find it in thousands of retailers across the country.
- More than 400,000 retail locations in Poland now accept Google Pay. More than a dozen different banks currently support Google Pay; to see if your bank is one of them, check out the Google Pay support page.
- Hong Kong officially has Google Pay. Thousands of retail locations including 7-Eleven, Circle K, Fortress, Mannings, Maxim’s Cakes, MX, McDonald’s, Pacific Coffee, ParknShop, SmarTone, Watsons, and Wellcome currently accept the contactless payment method. Check out the Hong Kong support page to see if your card is compatible with Google Pay.
- Google Pay is now available Down Under. Australians can now use Google Pay at thousands of different retail locations. Right now only a few dozen banks support Google Pay, however we expect that number to grow.
- Singapore is the third country to get Google Pay. The service is compatible with MasterCard and Visa from many of the country’s largest banks. To see if your bank supports Google Pay, head over to the Singapore page for details.
PayPal joins Google Pay
Google Pay is an excellent replacement for your credit or debit cards but what about your PayPal account? Well, Google Pay will let you link your PayPal account provided you’re running Android 4.4 Kit Kat or later. Previously, the only way to use the web-based payment platform for in-store purchases was with a PayPal debit card, or by inputting your phone number and PIN into one of the few compatible terminals in the wild.
To get started paying with PayPal from your Android device, tap the button at the bottom right like you normally would to add a card, then select “Add other payment methods.” PayPal may ask you to load funds to your account if you have not already.
Google Pay is currently only able to pull from your PayPal balance for transactions, but eventually, any cards you have saved on your PayPal account will also be supported.
Compatible devices and security
To use Google Pay, you’ll need an NFC-enabled smartphone running Android 4.4 KitKat and above. It will work at stores with NFC contactless payment terminals.
Like most NFC payment systems, Google Pay comes with all the necessary security, including a way to shut down devices that have been stolen so nobody can use your card. The system uses tokenization, which processes transactions via individual random account numbers, rather than your actual credit or debit card account number. In-app purchases are as safe as its NFC contactless counterpart.
Rewards and loyalty
As Google Pay is meant to replace your wallet, it’s expanding to include all those other cards you would typically have on you as well — gift and loyalty cards.
Google has been expanding its partnerships, and as such the company says Google Pay is the first mobile wallet to “deeply integrate” with Uber’s Payment Rewards program.
Walgreens says its Balance Rewards members can now apply their loyalty account via Google Pay at checkout. If you’re a member, all you need to do is add your Balance Rewards card to the Google Pay app. When you’re at the register, hold up your Android smartphone to the NFC terminal to apply your rewards information — when you’re ready to pay, hold the smartphone up again at the same place. You’ll have to add your credit or debit card beforehand to complete the purchase, of course.
Stores with NFC terminals support Google Pay
Like all other forms of NFC payment, Google Pay will be accepted in more than one million stores across the United States, including Toys “R” Us, GameStop, Subway, Whole Foods, and more.