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Reviving Google Wallet
Greg Sterling, principal analyst at Sterling Market Intelligence, said linking Google Wallet to Gmail has great potential because Gmail already has a huge installed base. He added, however, that users must be willing to associate their bank accounts with their Gmail or Google accounts. There may be some friction or unwillingness to do so.
"If it works it could be quite a significant boost for Google's embattled Wallet program, which recently lost its product manager and saw the last-minute decision not to introduce a physical payment card -- to broaden the mainstream appeal of the service," Sterling said.
Google Wallet is a combined product that includes online payments and smartphone-based payments using NFC. Sterling told us Google underestimated the enterprise and consumer challenges involved in getting people to use NFC payments and the time it would take for adoption.
"Currently there's limited awareness of the NFC-mobile side of Google Wallet and even less usage," Sterling said. "E-mail-based money transfers could become a successful product if Google can build awareness and trust among users."