One of PayPal's problems is that it's immensely popular. As the service implements more features and grows to support a larger user base, it inevitably loses some people along the way. If you want an app that makes it easy to send money to friends that isn't PayPal, Venmo is worth a look. It's simple, doesn't charge to send money from most bank accounts or debit cards, and it just received an update that makes the experience look more at home on Android.
After two years on the market, Google Wallet has failed to gain any kind of meaningful foothold in the mobile payment world. That's the gist of a new report from Bloomberg Businessweek, slamming Google's mobile and NFC payment service as a "money pit" and unlikely to succeed against existing and upcoming competitors. Among the publication's chief complaints are $300 million in investments and acquisitions, and hundreds of developers on staff, all for less than 10 million downloads in the Google Play Store.
Google's Wallet-powered peer-to-peer payment service launched to rival Paypal was announced on May 15th and came with an interesting promotion: waived fees for transfers funded by credit cards. This promotion was recently (possibly today) adjusted quite drastically, and now only payments less than $250 aren't charged fees. Additionally, we now know that the promotional period ends on June 29th.
Left: terms before; Right: current terms
Typically, credit card-funded transfers are charged a fee of 2.9% with a minimum of $0.30, but for a previously undefined "limited time," Google decided to foot the bill in hopes of attracting initial users.
If you make money on the Play Store, you should probably check your email. Google is sending out a notification to developers to let them know that in the future, payments will be sent out on a 15 day delay instead of the one or two days the company has been using for a while. What does this mean for you? Well, if selling apps is a primary source of income for you, then you'll want to do some planning.
Square, the service that makes "commerce easy for everyone," has just expanded its mobile payment/commerce service to Canada.
For those unaware, Square is an app/accessory that allows you to accept credit card payments anywhere from Android or iOS devices. The company provides a free card reader and app in exchange for a small percentage of each completed transaction, giving small and independent businesses an easy, inexpensive, and secure way to open up their products to those paying with plastic.
Jelly Bean may be all the rage at the moment, but the CyanogenMod team hasn't forgotten about their Ice Cream Sandwich implementation. Tucked in with the newly updated CyanogenMod 9.1 is support for the brand new SimplyTapp near-field communication system. SimplyTap is the labor of love of two dedicated CyanogenMod users, with the aim of broadening NFC payment usage via a more open implementation of the embattled standard. Currently the Tapp app is only compatible with CyanogenMod 9.1 - CM10 is moving a little too quickly to reliably add the necessary code.
It's no secret that Google Wallet got off to an extremely rough start. The service was announced nearly a year ago to a mild amount of fanfare, then almost immediately started hitting barrier after barrier, fighting for carrier and card support. Just a few days ago, they revealed that the big four (Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and Discover) were finally on board, thus bringing the service many steps closer to actually...
Well, we knew it was a possibility, and given Google Wallet's painfully slow adoption rate (by carriers and payment processors), rumors today from NFCTimes that the service's sole remaining partner Sprint is coming up with an alternative aren't exactly surprising.
NFCTimes says the service will be called "Touch," and will utilize a "secure element" system like Wallet (a physical chip) in order to securely process mobile payments. Likely by necessity, this would mean the end of support for Google Wallet on Sprint handsets released after the launch of the new "Touch" service.
Mobile payment providers. Yeah, I'm already getting a little sleepy thinking about them, too. Let's face it, they're not the most exciting topic in the world, but whenever we talk about how people spend their money, you know there are lots of companies out there eagerly eying the potential of various new payment technologies with great interest. Among such companies are cell phone carriers, and the reason why should be obvious: smartphones with NFC are ideal platforms for next-generation payment systems.
This is part 2 of this weekend's poll; for part 1, please see How Many Apps Did You Purchase During The Market "10 Billion Promo?"
As promised, we have a second question regarding the recently over 10-day $0.10 "10 Billion Promo" sale, inspired by numerous comments on the sale posts and via Google+/Twitter/Facebook.