In a much anticipated announcement today (May 26), Google unveiled a new mobile payment platform called Google Wallet that will allow users to tap their phones at checkout to make a purchase.
With the help of near field communications (NFC) technology – which has been used in parts of Asia for a few years now – Google Wallet-enabled smartphones with a NFC chip will allow users to make fast and secure transactions.
It will first only be compatible with Sprint's Nexus S 4G device by Google.
Google is partnering with a series of retailers, including The Container Store, Macy's, Walgreens and Toys 'R Us, to give customers the option to pay quickly by swiping their smartphone with a contact-less card reader that will start to hit stores in the near future.
Google will also be partnering with MasterCard and the service will be compatible with its existing PayPass contactless payment system.
The company plans to expand its mobile capabilities by eventually allowing IDs, coupons and even keys to be stored on your phone.
"Google Wallet is a key part of our ongoing effort to improve shopping for both businesses and consumers," said The Official Google Blog. "It's aimed at making it easier for you to pay for and save on the goods you want, while giving merchants more ways to offer coupons and loyalty programs to customers, as well as bridging the gap between online and offline commerce."