Within the past few days Google has released a 2.3.7 update to its Nexus S/ Nexus 4G devices. By utilizing the built in NFC chips housed in the back of the phone, Google has incorporated the Wallet app that now allows its owner to make purchases using their mobile device. Sounds crazy right?
Trust me, it works and will amaze cashiers as you withdraw your phone from your pocket to make a purchase as opposed to your actual wallet. The idea is similar to that of the PayPass feature found on credit cards, enabling you to hover your Nexus S over the payment device in order to register the transaction. In the future you’ll be able to link any credit or debit cards to Google Wallet, specifying an amount to add and using it as a prepaid card. What’s even better is that instead of having to cut out coupons to take to the store with you, just scan them with Google Wallet and they will be saved to your account. That way when you check out, the coupons will be automatically read at the register without the hassle of trying to remember where you stashed away your coupons.
For now you can only add a Citi mastercard or use Google’s Prepaid card included in the app when you downloaded it, along with free $10. Aww, how nice is Google :-). Okay, now you can stop reading and check me out using Google Wallet in action a near by McDonald’s restaurant.
What About Security Risks?
I know there are some readers out there concerned about someone getting their phone stolen and then having someone running around making purchases without their discretion. To prevent this, a pin number is required to even get into the app in the first place as well as before any payment. Furthermore, the app will not work if the device’s screen is off so there won’t be any worries about a payment taking place should one happen to accidentally swipe their phone across a scanner.
How Do I Get It?
Right now this is only available for the Nexus S 4G from Sprint and the Nexus S from T-mobile. If you have either of these devices, turn on your phone and press the menu button > settings > scroll down and choose about phone > system updates > update. Use those steps if the update has not been already pushed to you over the air.
If you are rooted do not accept the update if your device prompts you to do so. I will take away your recovery and possibly your super user access. Instead, download this file created by Peter Alfonso. Just flash it from recovery like normal. Make sure you make a backup of your current setup though and wipe the data before flashing the 2.3.7 version from the download link. It’s a stock rooted version of the update so there’s no fancy ROM with it. However, developers are working on it whenever Google decides to release it.
- Many Sprint customers still waiting for Google Wallet (news.consumerreports.org)