Google Wallet, the app that will replace Google Pay in many countries (more on that in a moment), has started to show up on people’s phones. According to Google spokesperson Chaiti Sen, the company has “started rolling out the Wallet to Android users in 39 countries,” and it’ll be available “to all users over the next few days.”
Google announced Wallet at its 2022 I/O event, pitching it as an app to manage all your digital cards — not just for payment, like debit and credit cards (though it does hold those), but for digital representations of your identification, vaccination status, tickets, keys, and more as well.
In most countries, Wallet will be replacing the current Google Pay app. (9to5Google reports that it’s currently rolling out as an update to Google Pay.) However, Google said that users in the US and Singapore would use both Google Pay and Wallet. In those countries, Pay will stick around as a way to send friends money.
Google’s had several iterations of Wallet that came before the one rolling out today. In 2011, it was an NFC payment app, and it evolved to include other payment features, such as peer-to-peer money transfers (there was even a physical Google Wallet debit card at one point). In 2018, Google combined it with Android Pay to form Google Pay. Now — in most places, at least — that app is starting to turn back into Wallet. It’s another big change in a long line of shake-ups for Google’s payment apps but hopefully one that will make it easier to store digital cards and pay with your Android phone.
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