Android Pay is coming to the UK, Google’s first market in Europe
Now signing up 1.5 million customers every week within the U.S., Android Pay, Google’s cost platform and cellular pockets for Android units and apps, is coming to the UK, with dozens of companions together with banks, bodily retailers, apps and cost platforms in tow. Google just isn’t giving a precise date for the launch besides to notice that will probably be “within the subsequent few months.” That is Google’s first market in Europe, and it appears prefer it’s the second outdoors of the U.S., after Google introduced the launch of Android Pay in Australia in December (the place it has but to go stay).
In the meantime, over within the U.S., Google is including extra retailers and kicking off a brand new loyalty program for Android Pay customers, in partnership with Plenti — a card-based mostly rewards program from American Categorical. Customers of Android Pay who signal as much as Plenti can now decide up loyalty factors and redeem rewards once they store at collaborating retailers. Contemplating that one of many points with cellular funds is that in lots of instances individuals can’t discover sufficient of a cause to modify from utilizing present cost strategies like bodily playing cards, it’s integrations like this with loyalty packages that may probably assist make providers extra “sticky” and probably extra helpful.
For context on the UK announcement, Apple Pay launched within the UK in July final yr, and Samsung has stated that its personal-model cellular pockets shall be coming to the UK this yr. Individuals had been noticing hints of Android Pay’s imminent UK plans, however that is the primary official affirmation from Google of the service.
In a way, contemplating that Apple made an earlier transfer to activate Apple Pay right here, and particular person banks like Barclays have put in legwork to construct their very own cellular wallets and contactless cost apps, Google is considerably late — or at the least took its time bringing Android Pay to this market.
One of many causes might have been that it was making an attempt to get a enough variety of companions on board to enter with a splash. As we speak, that appears one of many major themes of its announcement.
Included are eight massive banks — however not all of them, with a few of the biggies omitted together with Barclays and TSB. (Notably, when Apple Pay launched individuals identified that it, too, was lacking some main names — which then acquired within the months following.) Google’s Pali Bhat, a product administration senior director at Android Pay, notes that extra banks are nonetheless getting added.
As for retailers, the launch record consists of eleven manufacturers, together with drugstore chain Boots, Costa Espresso, Waitrose and Starbucks, in addition to the London transport community to let individuals use Android Pay on the Tube community, buses and metropolis trains.
Android Pay late final yr additionally began integrating with apps, so a few of the biggies that have been already working with Google on this at the moment are extending help to the UK, together with some new additions. They embrace meals supply startup Deliveroo (the UK’s reply to Postmates), quick trend chain Zara and JD Sports activities.
Equally, there are a selection of cost suppliers additionally working with Google, together with Holland’s Adyen, Klarna, and Stripe. Final yr, when Android Pay was made public, cost giants like Visa Europe weighed in with their help.
Google additionally introduced that it might be including extra retailers and apps to Android Pay within the U.S. extending the service to “tens of millions” of latest places. New additions embrace Greatest Purchase, Peet’s Espresso & Tea, and Rubio’s along with Eat24, Eventbrite, and Ticketmaster, on prime of the loyalty program with Plenti.