Google Wallet competed with Apple Pay by allowing Android users to access their wallets by just holding their phones up to credit card readers. In 2020, Google will fully discontinue the app in favor of Google Pay, a general financial management tool. Now, there’s a rumor that Google Wallet may be making a comeback in the next few months through integration with Google Pay, an exciting prospect that’s starting to exhibit an unpleasant pattern.
We need to talk about consistency, Google.
It Appears To Be A Good Idea
Google can be a force to be reckoned with, standing firmly behind products like Android and the almost incalculable number of smartphones and devices it produces for years at a time. Other times, Google farts forth good-smelling ideas only to have them wafted away before the rest of the room notices. I guess I went a little carried away with the metaphor there, but you see what I mean.
The fragrance of Google Wallet comes to mind. It was a brilliant idea, and many people would have adopted and relied on it if Google had decided to promote the app in any manner before abandoning it in favor of the next big thing, Google Pay.
Given Google Pay’s Venmo-like features, it’s understandable why the firm would want to create an app that allows users to effortlessly pay one another and manage their accounts in other ways, but Google Wallet’s ultimate demise was a shock.
GPay came after Google Pay. Actually, “after” may not be the best word considering they both exist now. To be honest, I’m not sure which one I should use half of the time! Now it appears that we’ve returned full circle to Wallet. Because GPay and Google Pay both handle non-payment cards like theme park tickets and airline passes, it seems reasonable to name the app Wallet.
But it appears that the wound has healed, and Google Wallet has returned for who knows how long before the firm gives up and goes on… again. Maybe in a few years, Google Pay will be back, and the cycle will begin again? It’s infuriating!
Whiplash In The Digital Realm
The issue isn’t with Google’s product; it’s generally excellent. Instead, the issue stems from the company’s inability to make up its mind. When Google announces a promising feature or service only to ignore it for months or even years at a time, it’s difficult to know what to anticipate. What’s worse, it seems to bring things back from the dead as soon as we’ve moved on, seemingly merely to torment everyone once more.
Google recently retired the Assistant Snapshot feature, which was intended to be a replacement for Google Now. Users are beginning to believe that another Assistant feature will be coming down the pipeline to take its place, despite the lack of a substitute.
Is Google concerned about the feature? We have no idea because it is unable to make up its mind. It would be better for everyone if Google could just decide that people should not board a ship that is supposed to sink before being provided life rafts that are also full of holes.
This has happened before, such as when Google dropped the Play Movies app in favour of the indistinguishable Google TV, or when Google recently determined that tablets are the future of mobile devices after years of neglect.
I’m not furious at you, Google; I’m just confused about where you’re headed and experiencing some whiplash.
Resolving The Google Issue
There’s no escaping the fact that products come and go all the time, but it appears like Google is having trouble keeping up and determining what to invest time and resources in. Google’s products may be even better if the company invested more time in allowing them to mature and mature into their greatest versions. The first stage is to stick with a product long enough for it to get there.
All of this back-and-forth doesn’t produce a fervent following — it just creates uncertainty and frustration, plain and simple. To address this issue, Google must stick with what it has and nurture and develop its projects so that they can mature into the wonderful products that we all know they can be.