Google abandons Hands Free payment app project

Google has announced that it is closing its Hands Free app, via a note on the app’s website.

The concept, which allowed users to pay for products through voice recognition whilst in possession of a wallet or phone, had been piloted for 10 months on iOS and Android. According to the tech giant, customer feedback has been pivotal in the decision to step back from the project.

Google has struggled to scale Hands Free in the same way it has with its Android Pay platform, and at time of closing the app was only available as a service at selected stores in the South Bay area, as well as a handful of McDonald’s and Papa John’s chains.

The full announcement on the Hand Free website read as follows:

Since launching the Hands Free pilot last March, we’ve learned so much from our early adopters.

Based on all the positive feedback, we’re now working to bring the best of the Hands Free technology to even more people and stores. To focus our efforts on that, we’ll be shutting down the Hands Free app on February 8.

While we can’t share any more details about what’s next just yet, we encourage you to enjoy quick, easy checkout with Android Pay.

Despite Google’s attempt at a seamless payments process apparently hitting a stumbling block, this has not stopped Amazon moving forward with its Amazon Go store that uses many of Hands Free’s photo recognition and cashless purchasing technologies.

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