Mobile payment service Android Pay is rolling out today. Android handsets that come with an NFC chip will be able to use the feature when checking out at retail stores and restaurants that have an NFC-based POS system. Those who had downloaded the Google Wallet app can update it to Android Pay. New users can download and install Android Pay directly from the Google Play Store. New Android handsets from Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile running Android 4.4 or higher will have Android Pay pre-installed.
Unlike Apple, which gets .15% of the value of a credit card transaction and .5% of the value of a debit card transaction with Apple Pay, Google is not taking a dime with Android Pay. That's because Master Card and Visa are allowing Google free access to their standardized tokenization security features. With tokenization, credit card account numbers are exchanged for a unique series of numbers that will validate a specific transaction, but keep credit card account numbers secret.
Google says that Android Pay will be accepted at Best Buy, McDonald’s, Macy’s, Walgreens, Subway, Whole Foods, Toys R Us and more. Additional banks and stores will hook up with Android Pay in the near future.
A PIN, password or pattern will authorize an Android Pay transaction. Those with a handset powered by Android 6.0 Marshmallow, will be able to authorize transactions using the native fingerprint support that comes with the newest Android build.
Samsung Pay, the manufacturer's entry in the mobile payment business, will debut in the U.S. on September 28th. Unlike Apple Pay and Android Pay, Samsung Pay will work even if a retailer does not have an NFC based POS system. In that case, it uses the same magnetic based swiping technology that retailers use to ring up credit cards.