Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) launched Apple Pay and immediately made it look like something totally new and different from anything else in the market. While Apple Pay is unique by most measures, it has peers and Google Wallet from Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) is one of them. Both services support mobile payment, and they use near-field communication technology (NFC). Unlike other mobile payment solutions out there, Apple Pay and Google Wallet market themselves mostly on the basis of secure transaction that they offer.
While the two services have so much in common, they also differ in certain aspects as would be naturally expected. However, they still drive the point home about how technology companies are trying to drive innovation and revenue from every aspect of the consumers’ life.
Currently, Apple Pay is only supported by the new Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) devices. Such include iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. The service is also supported by iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. On the other hand, Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL)’s Google Wallet supports mobile transaction on device that run Android or iOS. However, users need to have Android 2.3 or higher and iOS 6 or upgraded versions.
As already mentioned, both services make use of the secure NFC, which support contactless transactions. However, as an added security measure, Apple Pay has a Touch ID feature, which reads the fingerprint. Such feature also helps to avoid making of unwanted purchases. Although Google Wallet lacks fingerprint reading feature, it compensates for the same with encrypted payments.
Both Apple Pay and Google Wallet offer tap and pay solutions without the need of opening the app. All that a user needs is holding the device near a NFC reader for the transaction to be completed. A completed Apple Pay transaction is signaled by vibration of beep on the device. Completed Google Wallet transaction leads to a flash or beep on the reader.
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s Apple Pay was released about three weeks ago and is already available in more than 200,000 stores. That compares with Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL)’s Google Wallet that was released in 2011 and is available in 300,000 stores.
It is worth noting that retailers that have uninstalled NFC readers cannot transaction both Apple Pay and Google Wallet payments. Some retailers have given both services a wide berth in favor of a soon-coming CurrentC. Also Apple’s iphone is one of the costliest phones.
D. E. Shaw held 11.89 million shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) at the end of the second quarter of 2014. Ken Fisher‘s Fisher Asset Management held 745,519 shares of Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) at the end of June 2014.