26
Feb
Victory-Baby

As Android 4.4/KitKat updates begin rolling out to devices on all the major US carriers, one frequently asked question has to do with whether or not these devices will include Android's new "Tap and Pay" feature. This was one of the major additions in KitKat and allows almost any device with an NFC chip to be used for "tap and go" mobile payments, even if said chip doesn't have a built-in secure element. This means that Google Wallet's tap and pay feature, which has historically been disabled on most Android devices save for carrier-independent Nexus/GPE devices, and select Sprint phones, will now work just fine regardless of device or carrier.

Unfortunately, there has been a lot of understandable fear that AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile may require this setting to be hidden, disabled, or removed altogether due to the fact that all three of them are pushing Isis Mobile Wallet, which is a direct competitor to Google Wallet. Thankfully, these fears seem unnecessary, at least so far. Now that we've seen KitKat roll out for some devices on all of the Isis carriers, it appears that this functionality is alive and well, and you're free to use Google Wallet if you choose.

gs4_wallet_2 gs4_wallet_5 gs4_wallet_6 one_wallet_1 one_wallet_2

Here are a list of devices that are confirmed to have the feature enabled and, by extension, have Google Wallet's mobile payment feature available:

  • HTC One (All Isis Carriers) 
  • Moto X (All Isis Carriers)
  • Samsung Galaxy S4 (AT&T, KitKat update not yet available for T-Mobile and Verizon variants)

So far, the only device I can find with an official KitKat update that lacks "tap and pay" is the LG G2 on AT&T. Given that Ma Bell clearly doesn't seem to be blocking it, I'm inclined to believe that this falls on LG more than on the carrier. That said, we'll have to wait for the G2's KitKat update to roll out to Verizon and T-Mobile before we can conclusively say where to lay the blame.

Thanks, Craig B. and Aaron!

Shawn De Cesari
Shawn is a web developer by day and XDA's resident archivist for Nexus and Google Play Edition device OTA updates by night. When not immersing himself in code or Android, he can be found hunting down antique signs, taking road trips, listening to music, or playing video games. His phone of choice is a Samsung Galaxy Note 4.
  • Tom Blanchard

    Now if only they'd open it up to outside of the US...

    • RockAndRock

      Like France ? :p

      • http://rayshq.com/ Ray

        Like everywhere!

        • TheFirstUniverseKing

          Like...everywhere?

          *Facebook explodes*

    • paulsomething1

      A different technology offering essentially the same thing has been available in Japan for almost 10 years.

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    Still US-only
    Still don't care

    • Matthew Fry

      Still live in the US
      Still care

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Uh, good for you, then?

    • Wazzifer

      Butthurt much?

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        No. U?

    • yankeesusa

      It wasn't made for us yet. The rest of the world has secure chip credit cards and us doesn't so I think this is a big step

    • Marcus

      Is it really US-only or has no one other than Google Wallet bothered to make anything work with it?

  • Casin

    Nice to see Verizon holding up yet another S4 update.

  • Marcus Rayford

    I have the Droid Ultra...confirmed. IT WORKS!!!

  • blast0id

    faaaawwwwwk yooouuu ISIS!!!!

  • Ryan

    Though I am on T-Mobile with a Moto X, I think, somewhat, its just an unlocked GSM edition, no? Xt1053, too lazy to look into the specifics right now.

    But I have been able to use Google Wallet either way. However, I can see this being extreme news to those on Verizon and AT&T though. I just don't think T-Mobile actively blocks Google Wallet, but what do I know.

    • Justin

      They did until 4.4.2. I was unable to use it on my stock HTC one until the update.

      • Chad Vincent

        T-Mobile HTC One doesn't have the hardware to do Tap-and-Pay built in. You either have to have 4.4.x for software-based security, or have a special SIM.

    • yankeesusa

      They do block it. On all phones not running kitkat it is blocked. I'm running it on my rooted galaxy note 2 but when I had a custom rom based on kitkat it worked without any workaround.

      • Ryan

        I must of never noticed because the only T-Mobile device I bought from them was the Nexus 4 which I put 4.4 on anyway. Then off course the moto x already being on 4.4, well I guess it makes ISIS rather moot.

    • sam02135

      Google Wallet support states that Tmobile does not support tap and pay as of 10 minutes ago. ;).. maybe support should read more up to date news instead.

  • Aaron Saellam

    Works perfectly on my G2....thanks to Carbon-ROM.

  • Guest

    Guys, what does PSA mean?

    • Andy

      Public Service Announcement

  • WITTERU

    AT&T Galaxy S4 Tap & Pay confirmed working!!

    • sam02135

      Kit kat is not yet available for my phone?...samsung galaxy s4

  • FordNate

    if only they would spread the technology to the retailers to be able to use said technology.I've been all over and maybe a handful can accept it. Or if you say the carrier phone is going to use ISIS give us an ISIS ready sim card from the start and not make us pay for another one

    • yankeesusa

      Tmobile gives you the isis card for free. I thought att did too. I guess not

    • yankeesusa

      I've confirmed it works at cvs,McDonald's, home depot, Macy's, dozens of gas stations, pollo tropical and even my vet now uses it. Walgreens has the system in place but have never activated it.

  • Godspoken

    Lbr though, where can you ACTUALLY use this?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Shawn De Cesari

      Anywhere that you see a card reader that supports tap payments. Just about any McDonalds, CVS, Walgreens, a lot of gas stations, just to name a few.

      • Chad Vincent

        Didn't work for me at Best Buy, though. The terminal registered the tap-to-pay, but then declined it. Still trying to figure out if the issue is Wallet or the card.

        • yankeesusa

          Best buy disabled it due to a dispute with mastercard regarding fees.

          • Chad Vincent

            Good to know. Odd that you can use a physical MasterCard but not NFC, though.

          • yankeesusa

            That's what I said. Maybe there is another fee associated with nfc payments. Either way it's sad to see a company like best buy that sells the latest tech items not accepting the payment of the future he he

    • Tim242
    • yankeesusa

      I use it all the time. At cvs, mcdonalds, macys, pollo tropical, at over 80% of gas stations I go to. I have even used it in the drive through at pollo tropical since they added a system that can be used while in the car. it also works at home depot since they updated their system.

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  • Justin

    HTC One - Tmobile, stock, 4.4.2 update confirmed working. Gave me the prompt to enable it the moment I was done updating.

    • Craig

      But did you actually use it?

      • Justin

        Haven't actually made it to the store yet, but everything seems in place like it did on my GNex, which I did use occasionally.

        • Craig

          Right same with me but i dont think it will work when you try to actually use it not sure if its a tmobile thing or device issue

      • Robb Nunya

        I use it all the time.

        Whataburger, McDonalds, CVS, Whole Foods. All of these take it, and I prefer to pay that way. My phone's probably already in my hand while I wait in line, so it's a breeze to tap it instead of screwing with my wallet.

    • yankeesusa

      Did you confirm by actually using tap and pay at a store or just installed the app? I thought htc one did not have nfc.

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Shawn De Cesari

        lolwut. The HTC One has NFC and yes, I've used it to pay. It works fine.

        • yankeesusa

          Good to know. Was going to purchase an htc one to hold me off till my next phone. Thanks

        • Scott Breitbach

          With KitKat rolling out on so many devices these days, any update on whether Wallet Tap & Pay is operational?
          I've got a rooted Note 2 from Verizon and have tried a few different KitKat ROMs but Tap & Pay never worked. :/

      • http://the-jade-domain.com Jaime J. Denizard

        HTC One does have NFC, what it doesn't have is a secure element, so until you had KitKat installed, you couldn't use Google Wallet.

      • Kristen Monique Kemble

        Doest work on the note 3

        • yankeesusa

          I figured. For some reason on the note 3 it does not work because for some reason does not support the new method that doesn't require NfC secure element. Mainly I did not get a note 3 because of that

  • saltyzip

    When is this coming to the UK!?!

  • GJV

    Carriers rarely do anything by accident - could this be their tacit admission that ISIS is a failure?

  • Stormprobe

    I love Google Wallet. It is great!
    Isis sucks in every way!
    Verizon sucks because they block Google Wallet to try to force me to use Isis. I use nither because Isis sucks so bad that I'd rather use a normal credit card instead.

  • Plow Rox

    Not working yet on sgs3 but t mobile did give me a new Sim card that's supposed to be enabled for it...

  • Robb Nunya

    Any time anyone wants to bag on Sprint. Please remember, they're the only one of the big 4 who aren't douches about Wallet & Voice.

  • Robb Nunya

    Just set it up on my 2013 Nexus 7. I seldom actually will use it on the Nexus, but it's nice to have it on there, JIC.

  • Carlos Bailey

    I wonder why google hasn't taken the companies that promote ISIS to court for anti-competition actions. Why the hell should they be able to control when and how you use your phone for mobile payments. Furthermore ISIS is as big a joke as wallet originally was when it came out only supporting the Citibank card. Can't add my debit card or any credit cards on the t-mobile version.

  • sam02135

    I just activated google wallet and had a problem with nfc tap and pay. After some research on nfc and tags, I still had some questions so I decided to call google wallet. It was ugly trying to understand what google wallet customer service. Customer Sevice states that Tmobile carrier does not support tap and pay. I noticed that feature was disabled on the phone. I bekieve my version of android is Ice Cream. I have a sam. S4. I also thought the installed google wallet is running in the background but I specifically asked her/suppot do I have to open yhe google wallet app. And she said it is activated. Activated? Not same as the application is running? I'll stop there.

    From this forum and not through support, once I get kit kat, tsp and pay will be independent of the carrier...is that correct?

  • thekaleb

    Doesn't seem to work on galaxy note 3 KitKat.

  • Damian Madden

    Disabled on the LG G2 on T-Mobile.

  • Johnny

    Download the APK and then just put in a random post code (US) and her you go ( Samsung Galaxy S4 9505 UK) Must Be The Latest APK for Google Wallet

  • Jason

    I'm using the leaked 4.4.2 from Verizon for the LG G2 and I can use Google Wallet and Tap and Pay. Seems that LG didn't remove it from this build. Maybe the official build will remove it?

  • Anthony

    Tap and pay confirmed working on
    the LG G2 on Verizon running 4.4.2.

  • Gavin Davies

    Why I use tap and pay when it's built into my card! As well what happens if I get a virus on my phone, and money it's taken from my account. Will it be my bank that refunds me or Google wallet. Or will they just blame each other and I will not get my money back.

    Ill stick with my card as if I lose money the back has to refund me, as theres is no thered party to blame.

  • Javon Evans

    Isis sucks really bad... Like it's scientifically impossible to open issues without raging!!! They offer amex serve and city! That's it! Google alert even accepts gift cards! I was finally able to use it at my local Starbucks with my Verizon galaxy s5... Anyway I'm so happy that we can use Google wallet