Google wants to replace your wallet. "Our goal is to make it possible for you to add all of your payment cards to Google Wallet, so you can say goodbye to even the biggest traditional wallets," explains Osama Bedier, Vice President of Payments in a post announcing the official release of Google Wallet yesterday. Google's Android software has already replaced your phone, your discman, your phonebook, and now it's ready to lighten your load. At least that's how two Google developers explain it in the company's accompanying video. But unlike releasing a phone, replacing a credit card with a phone will take a lot more than a slick application.
No matter how well the application works--and the reviews for Google Wallet are pretty good--Google will face lots of roadblocks before the technology can become mainstream enough to full-on replace your wallet.
There aren't enough credit card companies on board. Google wallet only supports one credit card: the Citi Mastercard. "I don’t have one of those, and had a hard time finding anyone who does," explains TechCrunch's Greg Kumparak. As a crutch, Google also provides a prepaid card, which can be loaded up with cash. But it doesn't exactly work like a credit card, and would most likely supplement, not replace your other cards. Google claims it has other partnerships in the works, "though there’s no clear ETA on when they’ll be ready for customer use," reports Wired's Mike Isaac.