Google launches Google Wallet

In one country, one model of phone and on one carrier
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Internet giant Google has launched a payment service called Google Wallet on the firm's Nexus S smartphone in the US.

Google Wallet is designed to allow users of NFC-equipped Android smartphones to pay for goods by tapping their device against a suitable card reader.

The initial launch is limited to just the US-carrier Sprint's version of the Nexus S smartphone and only City MasterCard and Google pre-paid cards are supported as funding sources. However Google said the next step is to add Visa, Discover, and American Express cards.

To entice new users Google is offering a $10 credit to anyone who signs up to a Google pre-paid card.

Google Wallet is still a long way from becoming a significant payment system worldwide but the firm is hoping that more and more smartphones will add NFC technology to allow the touch-on payment service to take off.

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