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Google is introducing its Wallet app in India to drive digitization

google wallet

Google is launching its Wallet app in India, allowing Android users in the country to store non-payment digital items such as tickets, keys, and more. Ram Papatla, GM & India Engineering Lead, Android at Google, emphasized the seamless transition from paper to digital during an event in New Delhi. The app has onboarded partners like PVR Inox, MakeMyTrip, Air India, Shoppers Stop, and BMW, with plans to add more partners in the future.

However, in India, Google Wallet will focus on non-payment uses, coexisting with Google Pay, the digital wallet and payment platform from Google. Papatla clarified that Google Pay remains the primary payments use case in India, while Wallet is specifically tailored for non-payment use cases.

The Google Wallet app is now available for download for Android users, but there are no plans to launch it on the iPhone. The app has a long history, originally launched as Google Wallet in 2011 for mobile payments. In 2015, it was succeeded by Android Pay and eventually merged with Google Wallet in 2018 to create Google Pay, offering contactless payments and peer-to-peer transactions in one app.

The aim of the Wallet app is to address common user pain points, such as accessing boarding passes and tickets on their smartphones. Google highlights that boarding passes and movie tickets can be automatically surfaced in Google Wallet when users receive confirmation emails via Gmail.

Pixel devices sold in India will come preloaded with the Google Wallet app, and users can also add it as a lock screen shortcut for quick access. Google sees India as a significant market for search, payments, and apps, with over 97% of smartphones in the country powered by Android.

For now, Google does not plan to monetize the Wallet app in India.

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