Android Pay is a phone app that allows you to use your Android OS phone as a contactless credit card
Following in the footsteps of Apple, Google launched their much anticipated ‘digital wallet’ app Android Pay in the UK on 18 May 2016. You can link the app to your credit and debit cards and spend wherever contactless payments are accepted.
How to get Android Pay
You need to download the app from Google’s Play Store and install it on your phone.
But first make sure you have a compatible phone running an Android Operating System (OS).
Your phone needs to run Android KitKat 4.4 or higher to use Android Pay. If you bought a phone in the past two years, it’s likely to support Android Pay.
You can check which version of Android you are running on your phone settings.
Read more with our mobiles guide on how to set up Android Pay.
Which banks support Android Pay?
You can currently use Android Pay if you have a credit or debit card with:
But it’s worth noting that Google state: “participating banks might not support all card types for use with Android Pay. If you have an unsupported card, you can contact your bank for more information.”
Google claim new banks and credit card providers will be continually added to the app.
How to add a card to Android Pay
You need to register your card to your account to be able to spend. To do this you can use the card already linked to your google pay account, manually enter the details of a card, or simply take a picture of a card to ‘scan’ it in.
In all instances you will need to manually renter the CVC security code on the back of your card.
How many cards can you add?
You can add as many cards as you like to your wallet, simply select which card you’d like to pay from your ‘digital wallet’.
How does it work?
Android pay works much like a contactless card. If the till supports contactless payment you can simply hold your phone up to the payment terminal and pay.
You can’t pay for more than £30 per transaction and you will typiclly need to re-enter your pin for every £100 or so spent via contactless payment.
You don’t need to open the app to pay, you just have to open the screen. You will be sent a notification of what you have spent and where.
Is it secure?
It’s as secure as a contactless credit card, if not more secure. If you have security passcodes in place to login to your phone your card details won’t be accessible.
And should you lose your phone you can change your passcode or delete your data remotely with Android Device Manager.
As with ApplePay there is a tokenisation system where your phone creates a unique number for purchases. Your card details are encrypted and are not transmitted when you make a payment.
Fingerprint security is available, but only to those on Android Marshmallow.
- Android Pay UK launch FAQ – Everything you need to know about the launch of AndroidPay.
- Apple Pay – Contactless payment with your iPhone – Apple’s new ‘Apple Pay’ payment system is a new way of paying with your iPhone. We explain how it works and what to be aware of.
- Contactless payment cards – Contactless cards and contactless payments are becoming the normal way to pay for small purchases, but what is it and is it safe?