The brand new version, which still in an invite-only ‘early access’ mode, now offers built-in budgeting and spending tools in its digital banking service.
Google is getting deeper into mobile banking with the arrival of an array of new features, including embedded checking accounts, in Google Pay. The search giant has revamped the app to expand Google Pay’s offerings beyond digital peer-to-peer transactions, joining a list of big tech companies that continue to edge further into personal digital banking services.
The brand new version, which still in an invite-only ‘early access’ mode, now offers built-in budgeting tools and financial insights with visual spending tools and easy ways to manage spending to complete its payment service.
Google said in a live teaser that Google Pay’s suite of new functionalities is an extension of their original ventures into digital banking accounts from Citi and SFCU. Additionally, it plans to onboard eleven new partners in 2021 in order to add online checking and savings accounts inside the app under a new digital banking service called ‘Plex’.
Along with their bank partners, they were looking to make digital banking more relevant for the mobile-first generation. It will help their partners make digital banking more approachable to that generation, and not only make it more relevant but make it more fun, according to Caesar Sengupta, General Manager of Payments at Google told CNBC.
Google Pay added three new tabs to their digital banking portfolio that show transaction history, offer deals and discounts, and connect users’ bank accounts to allow them to find an overview of their finances and peer-to-peer payments. Further, the digital banking app is able to crawl other Gmail services like Gmail to look for receipts.
Under the banking collaborations, Google will primarily provide the front-end digital banking experience and insight via the Pay app while the banks provide the financial backing, FDIC insurance and transactional infrastructure.
Users will have access to physical debit cards issued through Google or its partners to use the digital banking service. They will benefit from savings accounts that have no monthly fees, overdraft charges or minimum balance requirements and can request a special Google-branded debit card, which will run on Mastercard’s network.
The new version of Google Pay gives the search behemoth more data about its users as people flock toward digital banking during the pandemic. It also allows Google to compete with other digital banking services like Venmo (owned by Paypal), Apple Pay, and Square’s Cash App.
All these P2P payment apps allow consumers to use their smartphones to enjoy the digital banking service to pay for goods and services, pay bills, and transfer money to friends and family. However, many of these apps expanded its functionality beyond just a payment service as users can also receive direct deposit payments and ACH payments, as well as purchase cryptocurrency through the digital banking platform.
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