As Google’s I/O 2015 developers conference draws near, tech experts are starting to get a better idea on what to expect. Some of the most promising new apps target the business sector, as Google is preparing to launch a completely overhauled mobile payment system.
According to confidential sources, a new Google service called Android Pay is set to be unveiled at the conference starting on Thursday. The service would allow credit card owners to receive payments directly through their mobile device, putting Google a few steps ahead of its main competitor, Apple.
In addition to Android Pay, the tech giant is also preparing to re-launch Google Wallet, a payment service that would allow direct transfer of money between users. The system is not entirely new – Wallet was first launched in 2011 and since then other apps, such as Venmo, tried to the same thing. However, Google promises an updated version that is set to outrank the Apple Pay service launched in October.
In fact, Apple promptly reacted to the speculations and the company is expected to announce changes to the payment system at its own software conference that takes place next month. Mobile payments are at their highest point ever, totaling $52 billion last year in the United States alone and expected to reach $142 billion in 2019. It is not surprising that the biggest tech giants in the world are desperate to seize the opportunity.
But a new mobile payment service is not the only thing expected from Google on Thursday. The search engine giant also confirmed the launch of the latest version of its mobile operating system, the Android M. After the recent Lollipop overhaul gave Android new looks, the new version is expected to focus on improving performance and fixing bugs.
After recently releasing a report showing the ineffectiveness of security questions, many tech experts were led to believe that Google wasn’t just showing off, but more likely has the company has something new in store. Along with the Android M, Google is expected to launch a highly secure authenticating system, most likely based on fingerprints. The technology has already been proven as a reliable option by Samsung, and probably Google doesn’t want to waste any time before catching up.
Other exciting Google projects have not been yet confirmed for the upcoming conference, but speculations can be made nonetheless. The tech giant will want to offer updated versions of the Android Wear and Android Auto systems, since some of its biggest competitors, such as Apple and Tesla, have been investing heavily in those sectors.
The I/O 2015 could also address the latest newcomer in the tech industry, virtual reality. Google has to find a response to Facebook’s Oculus Rift, but most experts believe the spring of 2015 is too early to see an update on the Cardboard program.
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