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Google Expands Its Wallet

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One of the Web’s biggest companies was also among the first to launch a mobile wallet program, and that early entry into the field has allowed it to focus more on expanding the system’s capabilities.

Now, Google Wallet is available for use on six smartphones and a tablet, is accepted at more than 200,000 locations across the country, and is expanding its capabilities as well, according to a report from the tech giant. The latest such innovation is that the system can be used in conjunction with any credit or debit card issued by Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover, four of the largest payment processors in the world.

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Free Credit Check ToolAll users will have to do to add their new card to their mobile wallet is go into the Google app and enter the card number, the report said. After that, the card can be used to make any type of purchase, which will be added to the transaction record listed on the phone, and includes merchant name and dollar amount.

Further, users will now be able to remotely disable the app itself from their Google Wallet account, which will come in handy if their mobile device is lost or stolen, the report said. This is in addition to the ability to lock the account, and Google’s requirement of a PIN code before the app can work.

“If you lose your phone, just visit the ‘Devices’ section in the online wallet and select the phone with the mobile wallet you wish to disable,” Robin Dua, Google Wallet’s head of product management, wrote on Google Commerce’s official blog. “When you successfully disable your wallet on a device, Google Wallet will not authorize any transactions attempted with that device. If the Google Wallet online service can establish a connection to your device, it will remotely reset your mobile wallet, clearing it of card and transaction data.”

And while users will need an Internet connection to see account data, change the card they’re currently using, or enter a new one, this will not be the case if they want to make a purchase using the card they currently have selected, the report said.

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Google Wallet is just one of many emerging near-field communications-enabled mobile payment systems, and it is expected to receive more competition from other participants in the near future.

Image courtesy Google Wallet

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