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Google Wallet Partners With Wireless Carriers to Take on Apple Pay

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Aiming to undercut Apple's mobile-payment service, Google is teaming up with three major U.S. wireless carriers to prod more people into using its mobile wallet. AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless will include the Google Wallet app later this year on Android smartphones sold in the United States, Google said in a blog post on Monday. Google also said it has acquired technology from Softcard, a mobile payment initiative that was created by many of the wireless carriers several years ago. The Google Wallet app stores a consumer's credit or debit card information and allows shoppers to pay for goods by tapping their phone against a special terminal at a retail store's checkout counter. Google launched Wallet in 2011, but the service struggled to become a hit with consumers, in part because the wireless carriers developed the competing Softcard service.The competitive landscape shifted in October, when Apple included the Apple Pay mobile payment service with the new iPhone 6 line of smartphones. Just three months after Apple Pay's November debut, CEO Tim Cook said the service accounted for two out of every three dollars spent across the three major U.S. card networks, when no card was used. About 2,000 banks and credit unions have agreed to offer Apple Pay to its customers. Apple hasn't said how many merchants are set up to handle its mobile payment services.

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