Android Pay to launch at Google I/O in May

Android Pay will launch at the Google's I/O conference in May, a source familiar with the matter has revealed.

Google’s new payment API (Application Programming Interface) will allow developers to add mobile payments to their apps to enable in-store and in-app payments.

That means Google won’t go for a new payment method, rather give the developing tools to other developers.

A company adopting the Android Pay API will be able to allow tap-to-pay transactions in brick-and-mortar stores, which is a function relying on Google’s Host Card Emulation (HCE).

Unlike the Google Wallet, the Android Pay API was built “from the ground up” using HCE.

Google Wallet will continue to operate as a separate entity, the source said, but it will be supported by Android Pay.

The news come just five days after reports emerged that Google was looking into buying Softcard (formerly known as ISIS), a contactless payment system collectively owned and operated by the major US carriers.

It was reported that Google was willing to pay carriers like AT&T or Verizon extra cash to preload Wallet on the Android devices they sell.

At the same time, Samsung is also getting ready to unveil its contactless payment system. A week ago the Korean giants acquired the American start-up company LoopPay.

LoopPay describes itself as “the most accepted mobile wallet on the planet.”

It seems as the contactless payment wars have just begun, and Apple, as usual, is leading the charge with its Apple Pay system.

Apple Pay has positioned Apple as the most powerful force in mobile payments, Ralf Ohlhausen, chief strategy officer at The PPRO Group recently said.