Good news, European readers: physical gift cards for the Google Play Store are coming to more of you soon. Google updated its list of supported countries for gift cards today, marking Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden as "coming soon." We can't say exactly when - a few other countries like Greece, Poland, and Portugal got the same treatment earlier this month, and they're still marked as coming soon instead of linking to the relevant page.
Last week Google released a sizeable update to Google Wallet that finally let you carry loyalty cards in digital form. Now Amazon has released its own version of... pretty much the same thing, minus all the other stuff that Google Wallet does. Amazon Wallet is currently in beta on both the Google Play Store and Amazon's own Appstore in a rare simultaneous release. Compatibility seems to be limited to phones at the moment, and since it's labeled as "for Fire Phone" on this promo page, it may be pre-loaded on that device.
Google's steadily rolling out Google Play gift card availability to various countries around the globe. We previously reported that Austria, Italy, Spain, and Switzerland had all made the 'coming soon' list. Now all four have bumped to officially being available now. Not only can consumers find cards in local retailers, each country has its own gift card site. Here's Spain's below.
In every country except Switzerland, the gift cards are available in increments of 15 €, 25 €, and 50 €.
A few days ago we caught wind of the existence of Google Play gift cards in Austria. It was good news, though it came as a surprise as Austria's name was nowhere to be found on the list of countries Google sells gift cards in. Now it is, though oddly still listed as 'coming soon.' Nevertheless, Austria isn't the only country to make an appearance. Now we see that Italy, Mexico, and Switzerland have joined the list as well (with Spain also still listed as being on its way).
Our Austrian friends might be in for a surprise the next time they stroll into a local retailer. Google Play gift cards are now live in Austria with no official announcement. The Google support page hasn't even been updated to list Austria yet. That's cool and all, but how about a little heads up next time, Google?
Good evening, Australian readers. If you're reading this story right after it's posted, it's very nearly Wednesday by your clock, and you're one day closer to getting Google Play gift cards down under. The Google Play support page for gift cards was recently updated to include Australia, saying that prepaid cards will be available in denominations of $20, $30, and $50 AUD.
The cards themselves don't seem to be on store shelves just at the moment, but according to an anonymous tip sent to Ausdroid, they've already been sent to a "national supermarket chain" and are awaiting an official rollout on Monday, August 26th.
Since its inception, things have been tough for Google Wallet. Adoption hasn't been great, many carriers have blocked its use, and the rollout of new features hasn't gone as smoothly as one would hope. In short, it's been a long, hard road for such an initially promising product.
While we've already seen Google cut support for the prepaid Wallet card, the company has now decided to ax NFC redemption of gift and loyalty cards as of August 21st.
It took Google how many years to start selling Google Play gift cards? When you look at it that way, it's not so bad gift cards are just now being expanded to Germany and France. Previously, the only supported regions were the USA and UK.
Both new countries will have cards in €5, €25, and €50 denominations. The process to redeem cards is the same as it is in the US and UK – just go to play.google.com/redeem and put in the code.
Yesterday, the gift card redeem page went live in the UK's Google Play Store, suggesting that gift cards will be hitting the scene relatively soon. It looks like Google is already gearing up for launch, as the option just showed up in the mobile Play Store, as well.
Of course, there's still one major problem: Play Store cards can't yet be purchased anywhere in the UK. In fact, they're not available anywhere aside from the U.S.
People in the UK have long been able to purchase apps and other goodies from the Google Play store using traditional methods, but as of yet there hasn't been an option to buy gift cards for redemption online like you can with other stores.
Fortunately, it looks like that could soon be changing; the Google Play redeem page now allows you to enter a redemption code from a gift card, although you can't actually buy the cards in shops yet.