Compared to real-life shopping experiences, online checkouts are relatively instantaneous but they still aren’t without their annoying time-consuming quirks.
You don’t need to queue behind the masses of people that have frustratingly not yet discovered tap and pay, but you do still have to contend with repeatedly inserting your card and shipping details into pages that timeout far too quickly. Let’s not even get into the Schrödinger's purchase conundrum that is the post-checkout error page.
Tap, tap, pay
Pay with Google will make it possible to remove the chance of encountering any of these obstacles by allowing you to save credit, debit and shipping address details to your Google account.
When you buy something at an online retailer Google has partnered with, you’ll simply have to indicate that you’re happy for these details to be used with a couple of taps and Google will send them on to the merchant.
At launch, Pay with Google will work with a handful of services available across the UK, US and Brazil but larger services such as Deliveroo, Airbnb, Just Eat and Hotel Tonight are confirmed to be coming soon. The focus certainly seems to be on food delivery, accommodation and ticket ordering services.
The biggest challenge Google is likely to face isn’t drawing in merchants – simple API implementation and the absence of a transaction fee will help there. Rather, it’s drawing in a wide range of international payment services that will take more time. Right now there are only 14 signed up but Google has said more are being added all the time.
The feature was first shown off in May at Google’s I/O event. At the moment it appears only the core function is being rolled out. From what was teased at the event (opens in new tab), however, we expect additional feature such as sending money to friends via Google Assistant and loyalty schemes at various retailers will appear in the near future.