• Google Acquires Softcard to Take On Apple Pay



    New reports are claiming that giant search engine company Google will be acquiring Softcard while also pre-installing Google Wallet to Android devices. Apparently the company had come to an agreement with major U.S. wireless companies to have the Apple Pay equivalent feature pre-installed on Android phones.

    According to Re/code, all AT&T, Verizon Wireless, and T-Mobile Android devices will have the mobile payment system. Re/code also reported that the Softcard acquisition was first talked about last month and would be below $100 million. Softcardís blog post noted the following:

    Softcard has completed a deal with Google to bring together leading technologies to advance mobile wallets. Google has acquired Softcard technology and capabilities to power the next generation of mobile payments.

    Under this relationship, the Google Wallet app, including the tap and pay functionality, will come pre-installed on Android phones (running KitKat or higher) sold by these carriers in the US later this year. We're also acquiring some exciting technology and intellectual property from Softcard to make Google Wallet better.
    Softcard like Apple Pay, requires NFC technology in order to work, but the difference is that credit card data is stored on the userís SIM card. The credit card information is then transmitted to the POS terminal for processing.

    Apple Pay, Google Wallet, and LoopPay- which do you think will the best mobile payment system? Let us know why you chose what you did in the comments below.

    Source: Re/code
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Google Acquires Softcard to Take On Apple Pay started by Akshay Masand View original post
    Comments 13 Comments
    1. talkin73's Avatar
      talkin73 -
      Do folks think the wild success of the iPhone 6 and plus were primarily due to apple pay? A lot of money and energy on phone as payment systems though some variance between how they work. How will google get this on a Samsung device that loop pay built in? Confusing to customers? Will it actually change which phone people buy? I'm pretty tied to Apple products so the iPhone 6 was s no brainier for me. Curious if people that switched to it started with an apple device would have chosen android instead if a system such as the ones listed in the article had been available? I appreciate they need it to compete because it is an important feature. But is it really enough to make the kind of impact they are hoping for given how much attention is going to this one feature seemingly at the expense of improving other aspects of the phone?
    1. aceestes's Avatar
      aceestes -
      Seems a lot less secure. Doesn't require biometrics (not that big a deal I guess), stores the actual card data on a sim (seems like a huge deal), and transmits the actual card data to the point of sale. And while that's typical as that's how physical cards work today, apple pay moved away from that and only transmits transaction numbers. Seems like Apple Pay still tops the list.

      But I guess being that this is an Apple forum I may just be being bias..... Probably not though.
    1. Jahooba's Avatar
      Jahooba -
      Quote Originally Posted by talkin73 View Post
      Do folks think the wild success of the iPhone 6 and plus were primarily due to apple pay? A lot of money and energy on phone as payment systems though some variance between how they work. How will google get this on a Samsung device that loop pay built in? Confusing to customers? Will it actually change which phone people buy? I'm pretty tied to Apple products so the iPhone 6 was s no brainier for me. Curious if people that switched to it started with an apple device would have chosen android instead if a system such as the ones listed in the article had been available? I appreciate they need it to compete because it is an important feature. But is it really enough to make the kind of impact they are hoping for given how much attention is going to this one feature seemingly at the expense of improving other aspects of the phone?
      That's just the nature of competition - don't let your competitors get way out in front. If Apple decided tomorrow that every iPhone should have a blood glucose monitor built-in then Android would need one as soon as possible.

      Remember what happened before "Be like Apple" became the mantra for all cell manufacturers? They nearly all went out of business. Copying Apple is not just fashionable, it's the only way to survive!
    1. psxcancer's Avatar
      psxcancer -
      As usual Google & Samsung always late to the party, scampering to come up with second-best ideas.

      All the safeguarding I do is worthless if the merchants can't keep my account information secure.

      Not giving out our actual account credentials, is the right way to go. After all, your talking about an old technology which was birthed in the early 1950's.

      With the introduction of the Internet, online banking, sophisticated hacking tools. I'm glad someone has brought an actual fix to the problem (Apple) and not just a Band-Aid type fix to our data breaches.
    1. bigboyz's Avatar
      bigboyz -
      ^^ Great points [email protected]! Follow the leader and the numbers do tell us that Apple IS leading this charge. Just like the smart watch craze. Apple said they were going to build one and EVERY other company that may have mulled it knew they now had to do it. They rushed it for the most part and we all see what is available at this time. History speaks for itself. Competition only makes these competitors give us consumers better products..keep it up :]
    1. H4CK3R's Avatar
      H4CK3R -
      Quote Originally Posted by aceestes View Post
      Seems a lot less secure. Doesn't require biometrics (not that big a deal I guess), stores the actual card data on a sim (seems like a huge deal), and transmits the actual card data to the point of sale. And while that's typical as that's how physical cards work today, apple pay moved away from that and only transmits transaction numbers. Seems like Apple Pay still tops the list.

      But I guess being that this is an Apple forum I may just be being bias..... Probably not though.
      Biometrics are less secure than a password, usually. For example, fingerprint scanners on a computer. They provide a line of defense that is convenient and somewhat secure, but a strong passphrase will always be more secure. Biometrics are not hacker-proof (yet), so until they are, they'll always be a little less secure.

      Storing data on the SIM card is way more secure than using the actual filesystem, since the contents of SIM cards are locked down and encrypted to protect account and user information.

      Quote Originally Posted by bigboyz View Post
      ^^ Great points [email protected]! Follow the leader and the numbers do tell us that Apple IS leading this charge. Just like the smart watch craze. Apple said they were going to build one and EVERY other company that may have mulled it knew they now had to do it. They rushed it for the most part and we all see what is available at this time. History speaks for itself. Competition only makes these competitors give us consumers better products..keep it up :]
      Quote Originally Posted by psxcancer View Post
      As usual Google & Samsung always late to the party, scampering to come up with second-best ideas.

      All the safeguarding I do is worthless if the merchants can't keep my account information secure.

      Not giving out our actual account credentials, is the right way to go. After all, your talking about an old technology which was birthed in the early 1950's.

      With the introduction of the Internet, online banking, sophisticated hacking tools. I'm glad someone has brought an actual fix to the problem (Apple) and not just a Band-Aid type fix to our data breaches.
      Google Wallet has been availiable since May of 2011. If anyone copied someone, it was definitely Apple.

      It's hilarious how retailers are only willing to adopt things after Apple has done something with the idea, and how consumers think that Apple Pay is some revolutionary service that is the first of its kind. Apple is way late to the party, but as always, there's the usual Apple circlejerk - which Apple has created with their great marketing strategies.

      Apple has taken Google Wallet, added their own little twist on it, and then advertised it as a one of a kind product that nobody else has invented. You people are all falling for their marketing tactics, and it's absolutely hilarious.
    1. aceestes's Avatar
      aceestes -
      Quote Originally Posted by H4CK3R View Post
      Biometrics are less secure than a password, usually. For example, fingerprint scanners on a computer. They provide a line of defense that is convenient and somewhat secure, but a strong passphrase will always be more secure. Biometrics are not hacker-proof (yet), so until they are, they'll always be a little less secure.

      Storing data on the SIM card is way more secure than using the actual filesystem, since the contents of SIM cards are locked down and encrypted to protect account and user information.

      Google Wallet has been availiable since May of 2011. If anyone copied someone, it was definitely Apple.

      It's hilarious how retailers are only willing to adopt things after Apple has done something with the idea, and how consumers think that Apple Pay is some revolutionary service that is the first of its kind. Apple is way late to the party, but as always, there's the usual Apple circlejerk - which Apple has created with their great marketing strategies.

      Apple has taken Google Wallet, added their own little twist on it, and then advertised it as a one of a kind product that nobody else has invented. You people are all falling for their marketing tactics, and it's absolutely hilarious.
      As far as biometrics go you're partially correct. Neither is hacker proof and probably never will be. But for making public purchases biometrics takes the cake. If I'm required to type a password or pin to make a payment in public I'm essentially exposing my password to all those within view. Scanning a figure print doesn't pose a danger in public view. But on all other points I agree.

      Storing on a Sim is more secure than storing on a file system on the device but fortunately apple pay does neither. If you lose your device with data on a SIM, sure it will be more secure but not completely.

      As far as Google Wallet being out first you are once again correct. HOWEVER Apple is almost NEVER the first to do anything. They don't want to be the first. What Apple does is take what already exists and makes usable and relevant to today's lifestyle, not tomorrow's. Touch ID wasn't the first fingerprint reader but it was the first done right. The iPhone wasn't the first smartphone but it was the first done right. Siri wasn't the first virtual assistant but it was the first done right. And from Apples example we get better products out of other company's.

      Apple Pay was the first of its kind because it's more than simply loading your card data from a piece of plastic to a phone. If Apple Pay was a replication of Google Wallet then Google wouldn't have made this acquisition. Apple took what mobile payment was and made it relevant. Apple never invented the wheel. They just got rid of the wood and showed the word rubber.
    1. steve-z17's Avatar
      steve-z17 -
      Quote Originally Posted by H4CK3R View Post
      Biometrics are less secure than a password, usually. For example, fingerprint scanners on a computer. They provide a line of defense that is convenient and somewhat secure, but a strong passphrase will always be more secure. Biometrics are not hacker-proof (yet), so until they are, they'll always be a little less secure.

      Storing data on the SIM card is way more secure than using the actual filesystem, since the contents of SIM cards are locked down and encrypted to protect account and user information.





      Google Wallet has been availiable since May of 2011. If anyone copied someone, it was definitely Apple.

      It's hilarious how retailers are only willing to adopt things after Apple has done something with the idea, and how consumers think that Apple Pay is some revolutionary service that is the first of its kind. Apple is way late to the party, but as always, there's the usual Apple circlejerk - which Apple has created with their great marketing strategies.

      Apple has taken Google Wallet, added their own little twist on it, and then advertised it as a one of a kind product that nobody else has invented. You people are all falling for their marketing tactics, and it's absolutely hilarious.
      Google Wallet wasn't even the first to use mobile payment/NFC technology, it's been around for awhile. It's all how the technology is implemented with the phone. It doesn't matter who had it first which is what others have been saying above. Apple has made it incredibly easy and secure which puts them above the others for now. You were right about one thing...Apple does have great marketing strategies!

      Personally I think LoopPay is a waste of time, it requires a separate device which needs to be charged after so many purchases. Yeah it is accepted at more locations but why carry an extra item around with you? Apple Pay is still on top for the time being! I just hope more and more companies adopt Apple Pay.
    1. PCYoda's Avatar
      PCYoda -
      Quote Originally Posted by H4CK3R View Post
      Biometrics are less secure than a password, usually. For example, fingerprint scanners on a computer. They provide a line of defense that is convenient and somewhat secure, but a strong passphrase will always be more secure. Biometrics are not hacker-proof (yet), so until they are, they'll always be a little less secure.
      Secure passwords are only secure if you can completely conceal them when you enter them. If your keystrokes are video taped or logged, then your secure password is absolutely worthless.

      Storing data on the SIM card is way more secure than using the actual filesystem, since the contents of SIM cards are locked down and encrypted to protect account and user information.


      Google Wallet has been availiable since May of 2011. If anyone copied someone, it was definitely Apple.
      Apple Pay doesn't store information on the file system. Apple Pay and Touch ID use a secure separate physically isolated hardware component to store data, and it doesn't store your full account information anyway. Apple Pay tokenizes your account information into a secure one time use token per transaction. Even if a hacker were to be snooping the transaction information, they'd get useless token information; with Google Pay, Softcard, and traditional magstripe credit cards, your full account info is sent along and is easily compromised. While the premise of using a cell phone as a credit card may not have originated with Google, the mechanism to do so securely came from Apple - and in reality, somewhat came from Apple partnering with Visa, since it's similar in concept to Visa's "virtual card numbers" that they've had available for years for select banks.

      It's hilarious how retailers are only willing to adopt things after Apple has done something with the idea, and how consumers think that Apple Pay is some revolutionary service that is the first of its kind. Apple is way late to the party, but as always, there's the usual Apple circlejerk - which Apple has created with their great marketing strategies.

      Apple has taken Google Wallet, added their own little twist on it, and then advertised it as a one of a kind product that nobody else has invented. You people are all falling for their marketing tactics, and it's absolutely hilarious.
      Apple took the idea of non-secure payments, secured them, and then marketed a secure payment method that could potentially eliminate credit card fraud and retailer data breach scares such as those that occured at Target, Home Depot, and etc - and eliminating credit card fraud helps to protect everyone involved from the consumer to the retailer to the bank. Google Wallet does NONE of these things from a security standpoint. To say that Apple Pay is just a marketing tool might as well be like saying "well, I could run multiple apps on a server before VMWare" - sure, you could, but you couldn't do it in a manner as resilient, stable and secure as you can now that virtualization hypervisors are commonplace.
    1. psxcancer's Avatar
      psxcancer -
      Quote Originally Posted by H4CK3R View Post
      Biometrics are less secure than a password, usually. For example, fingerprint scanners on a computer. They provide a line of defense that is convenient and somewhat secure, but a strong passphrase will always be more secure. Biometrics are not hacker-proof (yet), so until they are, they'll always be a little less secure.

      Storing data on the SIM card is way more secure than using the actual filesystem, since the contents of SIM cards are locked down and encrypted to protect account and user information.





      Google Wallet has been availiable since May of 2011. If anyone copied someone, it was definitely Apple.

      Apple has taken Google Wallet, added their own little twist on it, and then advertised it as a one of a kind product that nobody else has invented. You people are all falling for their marketing tactics, and it's absolutely hilarious.
      Point being, if Google invented it it...... It didn't work and it wasn't a success. So now that Apple has a successful system in a place and people are following the "true leader". Now Google and android want to follow on the coattails of Apple success.

      There's no denying Apple does use some unrefined ideas and technology. Apple will come in and pawn it and the rest is history.
    1. fleurya's Avatar
      fleurya -
      Quote Originally Posted by H4CK3R View Post
      Biometrics are less secure than a password, usually. For example, fingerprint scanners on a computer. They provide a line of defense that is convenient and somewhat secure, but a strong passphrase will always be more secure. Biometrics are not hacker-proof (yet), so until they are, they'll always be a little less secure.
      You may be right IN THEORY, but inreality it's not true at all. People went crazy when some geeks with a 3D printer successfully fooled Touch ID, but in reality the statistics have proven that successful phone andi nformation thefts have gone down! I have yet to hear news of a super-sohpisticated band of criminals that stalks people until they find out what phone they have, stalk them some more until they can pull a quality fingerprint, run back to your hideout where they have high quality 3D printers, then go stalk that person again to actually steal the phone. And THEN they have to hope to shut it down or get control in time before that person send a lockdown command via Find My iPhone!

      Meanwhile, if that same criminal wants to steald a passcode protected phone, all they have to do is stal kthe person until they can glance at them typing it in from several feet away and then steal it!

      Now, which way is really more secure in real life???

      Quote Originally Posted by H4CK3R View Post
      Storing data on the SIM card is way more secure than using the actual filesystem, since the contents of SIM cards are locked down and encrypted to protect account and user information.
      that would be true if Aple simply stored the credit card info in a file system, but the truth could not be further from that, so your whole point is moot. In reality the storage and access to that information is much more secure than on a SIM, and a SIM can be hacked like any other peice of hardware.
    1. psxcancer's Avatar
      psxcancer -
      Yeah, if Apple was smart, they'd release the "Apple Pay App" in the Google play store. That would undermine Googles efforts and would help Android users have a secure method of payment.
    1. aceestes's Avatar
      aceestes -
      Quote Originally Posted by psxcancer View Post
      Yeah, if Apple was smart, they'd release the "Apple Pay App" in the Google play store. That would undermine Googles efforts and would help Android users have a secure method of payment.
      I doubt that will ever happen. Since Androids are so easily rooted and the OS is far less secure and more susceptible to malicious software there would be far greater chance of fraud and possibly data breaches. They have more control and security by only releasing it over their own systems
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