Verizon Wireless plays hardball with Google's m-payment service - Mobile World Live

Verizon Wireless plays hardball with Google’s m-payment service

14 DEC 2011

Google says that it has been blocked from supporting its Google Wallet service on smartphones supplied to Verizon Wireless, the Wall Street Journal reports. Versions of the Samsung-made Galaxy Nexus smartphone offered by the US number-one operator will not include support for the search giant's NFC-based service, which enables customers to make contactless payments using the handset. Google Wallet is currently only supported by operator Sprint, using a different Samsung-made handset – the Nexus S.

According to the paper, Verizon asked for the app not to be included, and customers will also not be able to download it from Android Market after sale. Verizon has its own mobile payment venture, called Isis, which was created in partnership with AT&T and T-Mobile USA. According to the mobile operator, Google Wallet differs from other apps in that "needs to be integrated into a new, secure and proprietary hardware element in our phones".

The openess of Google's m-payment service was also questioned by analyst Bob Egan of The Sepharim Group. Google or its semiconductor partner NXP has refused to release the API related to the wallet's secure element, according to an article in Computerworld. The API is needed for developers at Verizon Wireless or other mobile operators to work with Google's secure element, said the article.

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Richard Handford

Richard is the editor of Mobile World Live’s money channel and a contributor to the daily news service. He is an experienced technology and business journalist who previously worked as a freelancer for many publications over the last decade including...

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