June 28, 2006 4:00 AM PDT

Open your wallet to Google

Related Stories

Google tests online payment system

June 15, 2006

Yahoo, eBay team up on e-commerce

May 25, 2006

eBay revokes Microsoft's Passport

January 19, 2005

Passport to nowhere?

March 23, 2004

A correction was made to this story. Read below for details.

Give Google credit for one thing: The search giant has a way of generating a lot of buzz.

This week, possibly as soon as Wednesday, Google is expected by many to unveil a new Internet payment system. It may start out as an online wallet but could become a PayPal-like infrastructure for payments across the Web, handling everything from skis to music and videos, analysts said Tuesday.

Interesting as that may sound, Google execs have actually said little about this service publicly. But--as has been the case with most other assumed product launches, from the successful Google Earth to the so-called Google Cube co-founder Larry Page was supposedly going to unveil at the Consumer Electronics Show in January but never did--that hasn't stopped Google watchers on Wall Street and in the blogosphere from going into high predictive mode.

"There is quite a bit of excitement and buzz among merchants," about Google Gbuy, as reports have called it, said Safa Rashtchy, an analyst at Piper Jaffray.

Rumors of a Google payment system have been circulating for months. Two weeks ago, Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt confirmed that the company was testing a system that aimed to speed online purchases, but he said it would not compete directly with eBay's PayPal. The system is targeted at advertisers and not general consumers, Schmidt said during a meeting in New York hosted by Conde Nast's Portfolio business magazine, without elaborating.

Google released a vague statement Tuesday saying: "Billing and payments have historically been a part of Google's advertising programs and online services. As we've previously announced, we offer users the ability to buy items on Google Base and at the Google Store as well as pay for services like Google AdWords, Google Video and Google Earth. We have nothing specific to announce at this time."

Perhaps coincidentally, company executives also were scheduled to host a talk on "Micro-payments trends and news" at Google's Mountain View, Calif., office Thursday night. The talk was part of a scheduled meeting of BayPay, a networking group for people who work in the payment industry in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Even if Google isn't publicly spelling out the details of its payment system, other people are doing it for the search king. As a wallet system, Gbuy would let shoppers carry their payment information around to multiple different merchants and save them the time of having to enter their credit card and billing data every time they shop, Rashtchy said. Users are expected to be offered rebates, and merchants can get discounts on ads.

Gbuy has been billed by some reports as a "PayPal killer," but it's likely to be much more, Rashtchy and other analysts said.

"I think that if this thing succeeds, it will eventually succeed where PayPal hasn't...as an efficient payment mechanism for a wide range of e-commerce transactions," Rashtchy said.

It would also succeed where Yahoo and Microsoft have failed, he predicted. Rashtchy said he used to use Yahoo Wallet, which lets people store their credit card and billing information when shopping on the Yahoo network. However, it didn't gain traction with merchants, he said.

Yahoo did not respond to a request for comment.

Two years ago, Microsoft began paring back its Passport service, which provided authentication and centralized storage for credit card numbers, and single sign-in for Microsoft accounts. Last year, eBay announced it would no longer allow its customers to log in through Passport. Passport is evolving into Windows Live ID.

 

Correction: This story incorrectly stated the date of Forrester analyst Charlene Li's blog. It was posted last year.

CONTINUED: Bye-bye Visa?…
Page 1 | 2

See more CNET content tagged:
payment, merchant, PayPal, Google Inc., Eric Schmidt

9 comments

Join the conversation!
Add your comment
Please compete with paypal
Granted paypal is cheaper than a merchant accounts, paypal user to user transactions with accounts that are already funded should not charge the same for those transactions. Right now it is about ~3% For merchants this is a lot of money.

Ebay is raking it in without any improvements on service or features. (google all the "I hate paypal" websites and "Paypal sucks" websites.

I would like to see google enter this market.

KM
Posted by kieranmullen (1070 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Please compete with paypal
Granted paypal is cheaper than a merchant accounts, paypal user to user transactions with accounts that are already funded should not charge the same for those transactions. Right now it is about ~3% For merchants this is a lot of money.

Ebay is raking it in without any improvements on service or features. (google all the "I hate paypal" websites and "Paypal sucks" websites.

I would like to see google enter this market.

Kieran Mullen
Posted by kieranmullen (1070 comments )
Reply Link Flag
I would love to see GOOGLE cards in check out lanes
Just think among the ITUNES and WORLD OF WARCRAFT cards that we buy for online purchases and gameplay that google could come out ahead of any only payment system if they had a prepaid card that anyone could buy at any retail store like BEST BUY or Safeway and Giant.

Just thnk of the ability to transfer the emoney to any other online store.

So far just a pipe dream.
Posted by inachu (963 comments )
Reply Link Flag
hey nice idea!!!
that would be very useful for kids or people who want to buy online but dont have a credit card or bank account.
Posted by df561 (94 comments )
Link Flag
No Thanks
I got a kick out of this:

"Give Google credit for one thing: The search giant has a way of generating a lot of buzz."

No, google doesnt generate buzz. Its the media types who generate the buzz by fawning all over google to prove to their fellow media types how 'hip' and 'tech savvy' they are.

Anyways, Google's got enough control of the worlds information. The last thing that company needs is control over finances. I'll stick to paypal, thanks.

As for chance of success - eh. I know its all the fad to swoon over google, but truth is other than searching and online advertising, they havent had tons of success at any of their other apps. Google video? awful. Froogle? Near useless. Google Earth? Fun, but they didnt even write it (A sin for microsoft, but google gets a pass from the geek crowd I guess). EBay, on the other hand, has a consistent record of success in the financial realm. My money stays with them.
Posted by (402 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Google is a good company
Google makes the Web work.
Website owners can create good websites and let Google make money for them. Before Google, you had to do everything yourself. i.e., get the advertising or sell a product, and do the marketing.

These days you can create an interesting website, and use Google services to get the traffic, and the best part is Google ads pay you for your effort.

What other company gives an incentive to create a good website? Certainly not Microsoft, they are too busy with Windoze to innovate on the Web.

Go Google :)
Posted by t8 (3716 comments )
Reply Link Flag
The web existed before google
"What other company gives an incentive to create a good website? Certainly not Microsoft,"

You mean, the same microsoft who put a web browser on every desktop? If not them, what about netscape? Those two have had far bigger impacts on 'providing incentive to create a website' than google ever will have.
Posted by (402 comments )
Link Flag
good company to spy on you
Let me see...

I delete mail in my Gmail account and Google keeps it around on their servers for as long as they want to, use it in ways that make them money and open me to the risk that it will be retrieved in a future lawsuit or possible government invasion of my privacy...

I google this and I google that and all the while Google is tracking me and monitoring my usuage so as to better 'serve me' with ads...

Do I REALLY want them keeping track of what I buy, when I buy it and how often just so they can 'know my habits' better to make them more profit?

Nope... not me!

Though I do wish PayPal was accepted at more websites for online transactions... but they are getting more and more sites to use them!
Posted by The user with no name (259 comments )
Link Flag
Competition is good
It's good that google is trying to put out a similar product to paypal cause right now, they don't have any competition and it's competition that forces companies to change pricing to benefit consumers.
Posted by thedreaming (573 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

Join the conversation

Add your comment

The posting of advertisements, profanity, or personal attacks is prohibited. Click here to review our Terms of Use.

What's Hot

Discussions

Shared

RSS Feeds

Add headlines from CNET News to your homepage or feedreader.