In the latest computer repairs news Google reinvents Wallet and turns your phones into virtual cards. I have written about this type of technology before and although Adaptu Wallet remains my favourite replacement for financial conscience, it does not allow payment by phone. In other words, it does not allow the user to operate their smartphone as if it were a bankcard/bank teller/etc. And as long as my computer repairs geeks need to carry bank teller machines and customers need to go through their array of cards to complete transactions and pay for service – with everything often ending up back at ‘sign this bit of paper’ stage, – I will remain to be very interested in all things that make this part of business easier for all parties…

Google’s new approach to the problem means that no more bank sign-ups are needed and eventually, no cards and no wallets and no bank teller machines (bliss). The updated version of (US only software at this stage) ‘Wallet’ now allows its customers to link their existing Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover credit and debit cards with a virtual MasterCard account, based on Google’s servers. The system would allow mobile users to pay at more than 200,000 retailer in the States with network expanding as interest and acceptance grows. This financial ecosystem, first launched in 2011, previously created a virtual account and required users to top it up, this was not the easiest solution for most and the popularity of Wallet never happened. The new 2012 version relies on existing payment accounts making it unnecessary for customers to remember to top up. To make this possible, Google has had to enter into partnership agreements with banks to underpin the apps functionality. As far as I know, only Citigroup accounts are participating fully to date. If the venture is successful however, it is easy to see the entire financial world herd joining in and then the innovation making its way to other countries such as Australia.

Perhaps, it is because of the needs of running a business or because of the because anything that makes buying fancy shoes a less painful experience I am actually very excited about this development. I see its slow progress as nothing other than growing pains and am convinced that grow it will! So get on board ladies and gentlemen and fellow computer repairs geeks.

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