Soon, You’ll Pay for Pizza Using Just Your Voice

Photographed by Rockie Nolan.
When Apple Pay first launched in late 2014, it revolutionized how people bought everything from Starbucks lattes to new Nike kicks. By saving your credit card in your iPhone's "wallet," you could then pay by simply holding your phone up to a scanner, with your card information protected behind fingerprint identification. Similar mobile payment methods rolled out on Samsung and Android. Now, Google, which first launched Android Pay about a year and a half ago, is planning to make mobile pay even easier. The tech company is currently testing a Hands Free app, which will allow you to pay using only your voice. The app taps into your phone's GPS services to identify when you're near a participating store. Then, instead of having to pull out your phone or a wallet (so old-school), you'll be able to buy something with four magic words: "I'll pay with Google." For safety measures, cashiers will require you to provide your initials, and then they will double-check you're who you should be by looking at the picture on your Hands Free profile at their terminal. When all is said and done, the service promises to be more convenient and faster than other payment methods. Right now the app is only being tested in the South Bay (for non-Californians, that's the Silicon Valley area) and currently only two stores are participating in the payment test, Papa John's and McDonald's. There's definitely a ways to go before everyone is saying, "I'll pay with Google." While the company says that over two million locations now accept the mobile "tap and pay" system, anyone who has tried paying with their phone before has run into glitches. We can foresee voice transactions having plenty of bugs that need to be worked out. Still, we love the idea of the ease that Hands Free would offer. Our bank accounts, on the other hand, may disagree with our excitement.

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