Google tests new mobile payments platform

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Google is rumoured to be testing a new payments service called Plaso which allows consumers carrying Android phones to pay for goods and services by giving just their initials to the merchant.

The Information was the first to break the news that Google was working on a similar service to Square’s failed Wallet. Google is likely to be using Bluetooth beacon technology to detect its digital payments apps on smartphones near the checkout. This would the merchant to find which wallet belongs to the customer being served with the given initials or name, and conduct a digital transfer of card credentials.

The solution with integrate with existing point-of-sale systems, the report said.

The service is likely to require some further verification to allow the payment, which could be either a PIN or fingerprint identification, or even a photo of the buyer appearing on the merchant’s screen.

The Information’s sources were unable to give details on when Plaso could be released. It could just be one of the many products tested by Google that never see commercial use, or could be part of its wider plans to compete with Apple Pay.

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