Google to give e-wallet evolution a goose

Company said to be readying test of Near Field Communications system

Google will soon lend a public push to the advancement of Near Field Communications technology that enthusiasts believe will one day allow e-wallets to replace the leather kind.

From a Bloomberg report:

Google plans to start testing a mobile-payment service at stores in New York and San Francisco within four months, letting shoppers use their phones to ring up purchases, two people familiar with the project said.

The company will pay for installation of thousands of special cash-register systems from VeriFone Systems Inc. (PAY) at merchant locations, said one of the people, who requested anonymity because Google's plans haven't been made public. The registers would accept payments from mobile phones equipped with so-called near-field-communication technology.

Whenever I write about my tempered enthusiasm for e-wallets - and it's been a recurring theme here - I receive a dependable stream of comments and e-mail reminding me that this technology has been embraced elsewhere in the world already and will inevitably make its mark here.

And I always agree.

Google does, too, obviously.

All I dispute is the notion that we'll be able to leave our old-school wallets home any time in the foreseeable future.

I'm not sure if Google has a position on that point.

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