Google Wallet

Ambitious NFC-based plan to replace just about anything in your wallet — credit cards, drivers license, retailer discount cards — with digital versions stored on your Android phone. But even by Google’s standards, this announcement seems very early. It’s “coming soon” to two cities (New York and San Francisco), on one phone (Nexus S 4G) on one carrier (Sprint).

I can’t help but wonder whether Google wanted to announce this ahead of any possible NFC-related announcement from Apple at WWDC. Everyone knows Apple is working on this stuff, but I have no idea whether they’re ready to announce anything. But, presuming that Apple is working with some of the same retailers and banks, Google might know.

But, Apple clearly spread word back in March that there wouldn’t be any new hardware coming at WWDC, and Apple would need to announce a new NFC-capable iPhone in order to announce an NFC payment service. So maybe Google is way out in front of Apple on this.

Thursday, 26 May 2011