Google Wallet to End Virtual Prepaid Card Support

Article excerpt

Byline: Daniel Wolfe

Google Inc. will no longer support the Google-branded virtual prepaid card built into Google Wallet as of Oct. 17.

The prepaid card option, which has been a part of Google's mobile wallet since its launch last year, allowed Google Wallet users to fund point-of-sale purchases with any credit or debit card by first funding the prepaid account. The only other option was to use a card issued by a Google bank partner, and for about a year Google had just one partner, Citigroup.

Google Wallet is compatible with six Android smartphones with built-in Near Field Communication chips for wireless payments. Google Wallet also works with the Nexus 7 tablet Google sells directly to consumers.

Last month, Google added the ability to link most credit and debit cards to Google Wallet by funding a separate virtual MasterCard. The original card's branding is presented to the consumer, and the virtual MasterCard is presented to the merchant. This new setup made the Google-branded prepaid card redundant.

"Since we recently launched the ability to use any debit or credit card in Google Wallet, we are discontinuing the Google Prepaid Card," Google said on its website. …