Google Wallet Unveils Instant Buy API for iOS

The new API means that developers will be able to offer iOS users the ability to buy something more easily with one click using their iOS mobile devices.

Google Wallet API for iOS

Google's new Google Wallet Instant Buy API now makes it easier for mobile iOS users to pay for online purchases using their Google Wallet account without having to key in all their account details each time.

The first-time availability to developers of the new iOS version of the Instant Buy API was announced by Justin Wong, product manager of the Google Wallet team, in a June 11 post on the Google Commerce Blog. The API is meant to help online retailers sell more products to iOS users who want to pay for their purchases of goods or services using Google Wallet while having to type less on their devices.

"Typing shipping and billing information on mobile devices can be a difficult experience, which is one of the reasons why 97 percent of mobile shoppers abandon their shopping carts," wrote Wong. "We introduced Google Wallet Instant Buy to make checkout on mobile sites and Android apps easier and help shoppers speed through the purchase process—often in as few as two clicks."

Developers can now bring the same kinds of Wallet payment features to Websites for iOS users once they sign up to integrate and use the new API, wrote Wong.

Instant Buy gives merchants and developers easy integration that works with existing payment processors, secure payments with 24/7 fraud monitoring and fee-free use from Google, wrote Wong.

Early retail adopters of the new iOS API for Instant Buy include Wish, B&H, Eat24, Fancy, Newegg and Sionic Mobile, he wrote.

More information to adopt the API can be found in the Instant Buy iOS SDK documentation, according to Google.

In March 2014, Google Wallet gained some new order-tracking features, allowing users to receive status reports and purchase information right on their devices after they make purchases. So far, the improvements are available to U.S. users of Android devices running Version 4.0 or higher, or Apple iOS devices running Version 6.0 or higher. Customers are able to see receipts sent to their Gmail accounts when they are inside the Google Wallet app. And they can view shipping updates, including whether their package is out for delivery, delayed or delivered.

In November 2013, Google gave Google Wallet customers in the United States another convenient way to make purchases using the funds in their Wallet accounts by offering a new Google Wallet Card, a debit card with no annual or monthly fees. The Google-branded debit card lets Wallet customers take money out through ATMs, make purchases anywhere MasterCard is accepted and receive quick notifications on their mobile devices to track their expenditures, according to an earlier eWEEK report. While there are no fees from Google for transferring money to or from the card using a bank checking or savings account, a fee of 2.9 percent is levied when a user sends or receives money to or from a credit or debit card, according to Google. The minimum fee for such a transaction is 30 cents. Some ATM operators also charge an ATM fee to use the card, according to Google.

In September 2013, Google released a new version of its Google Wallet app for Android phones that included improvements for sending money to others, getting special savings on online purchases and tracking purchases. The new version of the Google Wallet app rolled out for all Android phones Version 2.3 and higher.

In May 2013, Google announced that it integrated its Wallet payment services with Gmail, allowing users to safely and securely send money to a recipient in an email. The service, which allows up to $10,000 to be sent in a single transaction, works even if the recipient does not have a Gmail address. The new Google Wallet app also received that capability.