Google is nearing a refresh of its mobile wallet service, Google Wallet, which could include support for Apple’s iPhone, as the firm attempts to boost adoption, reports StrategyEye. Given that the iPhone 5 does not support NFC technology, on which Google Wallet relies, the rumoured integration means that Google will need to change tack.
Google is inviting consumers to request an invite to access the forthcoming update, before asking what device they use, listing Apple’s iOS software next to Android. If confirmed, it would market a slight change in tack for Google Wallet, which is yet to live up to its initial hype despite forecasts for the long-term success of NFC-based mobile payments.
Google Wallet’s struggles in the US, which remains its only available market since its launch in September 2011, has been hampered by its NFC exclusivity and failure to link up with a number of major US operators, including Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile. The trio are instead attempting to crack the market themselves, linking up to launch their own mobile wallet, dubbed ISIS. Google Wallet had a breakthrough in August when it enabled consumers to load any bank card to their smartphone using the app, having previously only supported launch partner Citibank, but it is yet to achieve significant adoption in a mobile payments market that has been long-tipped to explode in terms of both usage and revenues.