Ever since March of last year, Google has been testing a new payment method called Hands Free. The premise was that you could pay for goods with your smartphone without ever having to remove it from your pocket. The pilot was limited to the Bay Area and to only a few businesses. But now, the experiment has hit its end of life for the time being.
As of February 8, Hands Free will shut down. Here's the official statement from Google:
"Since launching the Hands Free pilot last March, we’ve learned so much from our early adopters.
Based on all the positive feedback, we’re now working to bring the best of the Hands Free technology to even more people and stores. To focus our efforts on that, we’ll be shutting down the Hands Free app on February 8.
While we can’t share any more details about what’s next just yet, we encourage you to enjoy quick, easy checkout with Android Pay."
Once this happens, any photo that was added to the app will be deleted for privacy's sake. This is not necessarily a permanent closure of the service, but Google is encouraging users to opt-in to email updates to be "kept in the loop" about any further details about what's coming.
Who knows, maybe we'll see a wider launch at some later date. Farewell for now, Hands Free.
- Josh C.