Mobile payments have been something that Google have been experimenting with for a long time now. North Americans will know the failed attempt of Google Wallet that Android 2.3 endured with Sprint. Since then, we’ve seen Apple and Samsung launch the not-so-original Apple Pay and Samsung Pay platforms, and Google soon followed suit with the as-original Android Pay service. Joking aside, Android Pay is one of the few services that has the potential to reach the most amount of customers, thanks to the fact that it’s compatible with a much, much wider variety of devices. Like many new initiatives from Google, Android Pay was launched in the United States first, but today the official Android UK blog has detailed the upcoming launch of the service across the pond in the UK.
When it launches in the “upcoming months” Android Pay in the UK will support Visa and MasterCard cards as well as bank accounts from many of the big names including Halifax, Nationwide, First Direct, Lloyds, MBNA and more. Curiously absent here is Barclays, one of the UK’s biggest banks, and also one that is championing their own mobile payments system. Stores confirmed to support the service at launch include Aldi, BP, Costa, Starbucks, Greggs, Waitrose and Transport for London for quicker ticket purchases. There’s a wide variety of stores, banks and online brands featured in the gallery below.
The Android blog post tells us to “stay tuned” for more information. Those in the UK will no doubt feel as if Google have taken their sweet time bringing Android Pay across the pond, as Apple Pay has been available in a number of large retail stores up and down the high street, as well as being offered by many of the biggest banks in the UK. Regardless, no service is perfect at the moment, and these are still in the opening stages of development, which means that it’ll take some more time for all the bigger names to join in the fun, but as with a lot of different technologies, everything has start somewhere. Android Pay is also expanding in the US, too so there are good signs of progress for the platform as a whole.