Google Pay Returns Loyalty Card Sorting to The App

Loyalty Cards in Google Pay

A cloud-side update to Google Pay is rolling out that finally brings back the ability to sort loyalty and gift cards in the app to your liking.  The ability to sort these cards was something that was a part of Android Pay but when the rebranding of the app and service took place earlier this year, the feature was dropped.

The ability to sort your loyalty and gift cards may seem minor but if you have a lot of these types of cards in your Google Pay app, it can be a bit of a pain (and somewhat awkward if you are trying to use one in a queue at a retailer) trying to find them.  I personally love the fact that my cards can now be put in alphabetical order.

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Google Pay Adds a Massive 171 Financial Institutions to The Roster

Google Pay Home Screen

A colleague of mine always starts detailed emails with “BLUF” – Bottom Line Up Front.  So here is your BLUF:  If your bank doesn’t support Google Pay at this point, it is probably time to look for a new bank.  Up until yesterday, in 2018 alone, the tap-to-pay service had added 141 new banks:  80 in January and another 61 in March.  They just doubled the number by adding an scarcely believable 171 financial institutions yesterday.

The additional financial institutions brings the total number of those supporting Google Pay to 1,364 across the United States.

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Southwest Airlines Boarding Passes Can Now Be Saved to Google Pay

Google Pay Cards Page

After an update to their own app last week, Southwest Airlines will now let you save your boarding passes for flights to Google Pay.  It means that you will have one place to go for your boarding passes, purchasing and money transfers on your Android phone.  Southwest is the first airline to support this feature, which has been rumored to be coming down the pike for weeks.  It follows light rail transit tickets in Las Vegas and Portland being supported in the tap-to-pay app last month.

If you have upcoming flights on Southwest, you can view your boarding pass in their app and you will see the option to add the boarding pass to Google Pay.  Tap that button and your boarding pass will now appear in the Rewards & Gift Cards section of the app.

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Google Pay Looks Set to Add Support for Airline Boarding Passes

Google Pay Cards Page

A new update to the Google Pay app is rolling out in the Google Play Store today.  While the update itself, version 1.57 for those keeping score at home, doesn’t bring a lot of excitement on the surface, there are some potentially exciting things in the code that could bring big improvements to the app.

A teardown of the app by the team over at Android Police points to code within the Google Pay app where airline boarding passes could be supported.  This would allow for the Pay app to be the center of your travel, not just a tap-to-pay app.  Given that the app already supports some transit tickets with more coming, supporting airline boarding passes isn’t a big stretch.

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You Can Now Send Money via Google Assistant from Google Pay on Your Phone

Send Cash via Google Assistant from Google Pay

Here is another great example of how fun it is to live in the future.  Google has rolled out a new feature for Google Assistant that allows you to send money to a contact from you Google Pay account all by voice command.  Now you can sort out sending cash to a friend or family member immediately and, more importantly, securely.

The feature works by you saying something to the effect, “Hey Google, send $20 to Rob for beer” and you will be prompted for which Rob if you have multiple Rob’s in your contacts.  Once the contact is identified, you will be prompted by Assistant to confirm the funds transfer and then use your fingerprint to actually authorize the transfer.  That’s it!

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Las Vegas Monorail Transit Tickets Now Supported in Google Pay

Las Vegas Monorail Ticket in Google Pay

When Android Pay was rebranded and revamped as Google Pay, it known that public transportation tickets would eventually make their way into the tap-to-pay app.  Now the first one has arrived in Las Vegas.

Starting today, you can purchase tickets for the Las Vegas Monorail online and have it added to your Pay wallet.  Then, when you get to a pay station, just tap your phone to the terminal like any other purchase.  When the gate turns green, go through the gate and your fare will be deducted from your balance.

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Google Pay Adds 61 New Financial Institutions

Google Pay Logo

The start to 2018 has been busy for the Google Pay team and today is another example of it.  61 new financial institutions have added support for the tap-to-pay service, bringing to total number of banks and credit unions supporting it to just shy of 1200 (1193 to be exact).

As has become the norm over the past several months, these new institutions are smaller, regional ones.  At this point, it is more of a question of which banks are not supporting Google Pay as that number would be significantly smaller.

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Google Pay App is a Substantial Update from Android Pay

Google Pay Logo

Yesterday, Google announced that Google Pay was being officially launched with new branding and app updates.  The update to the old Android Pay app is now rolling out and it brings not only a name change, but a substantial user experience update.  The first public version of Google Pay for Android is 1.53 and it will replace your Android Pay app on your phone when you get the OTA update.

When you first open the app, you will immediately see the improvements in the app.  It has a light theme to it and has a two-tab bottom navigation.  The Home screen has a carousel of all of your cards and payment options at the top.  Simply slide to the card you want to use while you are paying at a terminal to use that card.  If you want to make it your default card, just long press it.

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