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Google Wallet Abandons In-App Purchases

Google Wallet has officially pulled out of the in-app business—although it will continue to handle such purchases until March 2, 2015—and has gone out of its way to neither offer a replacement service nor to steer any business to any existing service.

A Q&A on Google’s site asks “What are alternative payment solutions I can use?” and then Google answered its own question by saying: “Because we feel that Google Wallet merchants know their buyers best, we encourage you to research payment processing solutions to best fit the needs of your buyers.”

Google’s reason for pulling out of the business is equally surrender-oriented, as it essentially says other companies today do it better so why should Google continue to try? In Google’s words: “When we first launched Google Wallet for digital goods, we wanted to make it simple for users and merchants to buy and sell online. The industry has matured a lot since then, providing a number of alternative payment solutions to choose from. As we continue to evolve and improve our merchant tools to meet new market challenges in the payments space, we are writing to let you know we will be retiring the Google Wallet for digital goods API on March 2, 2015.”

But Google is by no means asking merchants to stick with the service through March 2. It is strongly suggesting that merchants leave as soon as possible, while also saying that it won’t go out of its way to give shoppers a smooth exit. “Google Wallet buyers will not be proactively notified. Keep in mind that if you do not remove your integration before March 2, 2015, your buyers will get 404 errors upon checking out with Google Wallet for digital goods API,” Google said. “To preserve your user experience, we highly recommend removing your integration and migrating to another payment processing solution as soon as possible.”

On the plus side, Google said that it will continue—for an unspecified period of time—to handle refunds. “You will still be able to log into your Google Wallet Merchant Center at wallet.google.com/merchant with full functionality to take actions such as cancel or refund orders, view your reporting, and edit your account settings,” Google said.

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