One of the big knocks on Google Wallet, the company’s smartphone-based mobile-payment service, is that it’s only been available on one phone to date–the Samsung Nexus S from Sprint.
That is no longer true. The Wallet app may be installed and used on Samsung Galaxy S and Galaxy Nexus handsets fueled by a SIM card from AT&T. Droid Life dropped the news, which stemmed from a Feb. 1 upgrade to the Wallet app.
A Google spokesperson told me:
“Yes, Google Wallet is now available for AT&T NFC-enabled Android phones with a secure element. We pushed the latest and greatest version of the app to Android Market yesterday. We hope everyone will download Google Wallet so they too can experience the magic of paying and saving with their phones.“
That latter sentence is certainly true. Google is banking on Wallet as its future for not just mobile payments, but all commerce payments to the company. Wallet has ostensibly absorbed the Google Checkout service.
Those curious on how Wallet works on a phone should check out this video:
Meanwhile, it bears noting that Wallet support is a delicate proposition for U.S. carriers.
Verizon has disallowed the Wallet app on its Galaxy Nexus handset for what it claims are concerns about Google’s security implementation of the service; AT&T and T-Mobile have joined together on their own Isis mobile-payment platform.
That’s scheduled to go to trial this year, so you can see that these carriers aren’t in a super-hurry to enable Wallet to work on their phones.
For those craving Wallet on the Verizon Galaxy Nexus, Droid Life offers instructions here.