Google announced it is rolling out P2P payments through Gmail. This isn’t really new; Google Wallet is a P2P app that has been available for years. What is new is the easy access through Gmail. Finextra, among other media outlets reported on its launch:
US users simply link a card and then tap on the attachment icon and pick whether to send or request money. Recipients do not need a Gmail account and can have the money routed directly to their bank accounts.
The service is free to the tens of millions of US Gmail account holders, although it remains to be seen whether this is enough to help it gain momentum in a fast growing market dominated by PayPal’s Venmo and including Square Cash and bank-backed Zelle.
This more accessible, more visible form of Google Wallet may take some volume from leading providers, Zelle, Venmo and Facebook Messenger. As the P2P market begins to take shape, some of the questions we will endeavor to answer include, what is the importance to consumers of immediate funds availability as offered by Zelle? Is “social”, a key component of Venmo, effective in driving use over the long term? Will contextual cues, meaning being prompted to use a P2P service based upon the content of your email or browsing habit going to impact usage to a meaningful degree, and how many P2P solutions will consumers use? Perhaps they will seamlessly move among all the available apps.
Overview by Sarah Grotta, Director, Debit Advisory Service at Mercator Advisory Group
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