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Android Pay


Android Pay supports 31 new banks and credit unions

One of the disadvantages of Android Pay is that banks, credit unions, and credit card companies have to support it (as opposed to Google Wallet NFC payments). Thankfully, support has greatly expanded in the past few months, with Chase being the last major holdout in the United States.

Now Android Pay has started working with 31 additional banks and credit unions. Here is the full list:

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Android Pay officially expands to Japan

Google is slowly but surely expanding its Android Pay platform to more territories. Today Japan gets access - if you're in the country you should be able to download the app from the Play Store for the first time on Android 4.4 or later. Google's retail partners in Japan include McDonalds, Dominoes, Lawson, Mini-Stop, Apita, Family Mart, and Coca-Cola vending machines, along with a handful of Japan-exclusive retailers. 

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Android Pay v1.12 prepares for launch in Japan with Rakuten Edy and other e-money providers [APK Teardown]

Android Pay made its first Asian appearance in Singapore back in late-June. A couple months later, in August, rumors began circulating that Google was in negotiations with numerous financial companies to prepare for a launch in Japan. Names of the likely partners included: Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, East Japan Railway Company, Rakuten, NTT Docomo, and JCB, to name a few. Since then, details have been sparse; but with evidence discovered in the latest update to Android Pay, it's now clear that a deal has been struck with Rakuten.

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Android Pay makes its way to Ireland

Android Pay may not yet exist where you live, but it is slowly continuing to expand into new markets. As of today, Pay is available in Ireland, making this effectively the first time a user can use euros with Android Pay.

Impressively, Android Pay works on any NFC-enabled phone running KitKat 4.4 and up — which as of last week potentially represents as much as 84.7% of active devices. Setting up mobile payments requires adding an eligible debit or credit card from either AIB or KBC, with more banks to be added "in the coming months." For now, Android Pay in Ireland supports nine retail partners and seven apps, including Tesco, McDonald's, and Uber.

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Google announces Android Pay holiday reward promo in the UK, plus holiday animations for everyone

'Tis the season to shop, and Google hopes you'll use Android Pay to do it. For users in the UK, Google is sweetening the deal with virtual crackers. Well, not only virtual crackers (it's a regional thing). The crackers might come with gift cards worth up to £500. If you don't live in the UK, your consolation prize is a series of holiday animations in the Android Pay app (they get those in the UK too).

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Android Pay comes to New Zealand

Android Pay supplanted Google Wallet as the contactless payment platform for Android a little over a year ago, but that was just the US release. It has since come to the UK, Poland, Australia, and more. Starting today, you can add New Zealand to the list. However, there's only one supported card right now.

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Android Pay v1.10 includes clues about a promotional "game" with real prizes [APK Teardown]

Most teardowns show a list of fairly predictable features or changes, but every once in a while something will turn up that isn't so expected. A look inside the recently released Android Pay v1.10 update is a good example. The typical things can be found, like a line about a second tier for loyalty programs and some stuff to encourage users to visit nearby vendors, but the really interesting bit is some text about a "game" that may have real prizes.

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Google Play services v10.0 prepares for Tap 'n Pay with Android Wear and makes progress on Instant Apps [APK Teardown]

As we close in on the end of the year, Google's developers are lining things up for possible late-2016 launches or preparing to test features they plan to launch next year. With the rollout of Google Play services v10.0, a couple of those things stand out as current projects. There are signs final testing has begun for Instant Apps, Google's way to give users a way to use apps without actually installing them. It also looks like some progress has been made towards enabling Android Pay to work through Android Wear.

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Weekend poll: Do you make NFC payments?

NFC payments have seen a slow but steady rise here in the US in the past few years. While far from achieving global penetration, systems like Android Pay and Apple Pay have actually become pretty commonplace in many large retail chains and even some small businesses via checkout services like Square in America. I'd say I'm using Android Pay, personally, about half the time I'm interacting with a card terminal these days.

But I know it's not like that for everybody, and that other systems like Samsung Pay, or some specific to certain banks in some countries, do exist. So I'm curious if you use NFC (and/or MST) and, specifically, which system you use.

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Android Pay launches tomorrow (November 17th) in Poland with support for three banks

Android Pay has existed for more than a year now. It's expanded far beyond the original US launch, but there's a lot of the world still to go. Google has announced another step along the way for Android Pay, and it's Poland. This is the second EU nation to get access. Well, that's only if you still count the UK. Post-Brexit, I guess you could say Poland is the first.

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