Android Pay is set to arrive Down Under in the first half of 2016, Google has revealed. In a recent blog, director of product management at Android Pay Pali Bhat stated that Australia would be the first country outside of the US to receive the service.
What's more, Android Pay will hit Australia with an improved service. Until now, it has allowed users to tap and pay, touching their phones to contactless terminals to pay for services in the same way as you would with a contactless card. From now on, customers will instead be able to use the service to make in-app purchases as well – something that should help it compete with Apple Pay, which has offered this functionality since its release.
However, it seems Android Pay has the edge in the Australian market. Google has managed to arrange partnerships with key companies including phone service Telstra, major banks – including ANZ and Westpac – and more.
“You will be able to use Android Pay wherever NFC payments are accepted in the country, including merchants such as 7-Eleven, McDonald's and Telstra,” stated Mr Bhat.
Apple Pay is yet to make Australian partnerships on such a large scale, so when Android Pay arrives in 2016, it will be interesting to see which of the two dominates the market.
“And Australia is just the start. We'll be adding more countries throughout 2016. This was a big year for Android Pay, and we're excited about what's to come,” Mr Bhat added.
When it reaches Australia, Android Pay will give users two main ways to pay for products and services without the need for using credit or debit cards. One is using it like a contactless card, as described above, and the other is to make payments within apps.
As well as being fast, this service is intended to help keep your details more secure by shielding your card information from merchants.