Does Google Wallet have a real future? Tap-to-pay schemes have worked well in many, many places all over the world, and with America's infrastructure, there's really no reason why it shouldn't work well here, too. While Wallet had to launch in limited markets at first, things are slowly but surely starting to expand. This week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced that NJ TRANSIT is the first public transportation agency to partner with Google Wallet, Google's recently released contactless payment system. With Google Wallet, NJ TRANSIT rail and bus customers have the option to use their smartphones to tap and pay for transportation tickets at select locations.
"Our partnership with Google
demonstrates that NJ TRANSIT and the State are at the forefront of emerging technology, paving the way for further exploration of new customer service technologies," said Governor Christie. "I'm proud that New Jersey's public transportation system is the very first public transportation agency to partner with Google Wallet, joining thousands of retailers accepting Wallet across the nation."
"We are putting the latest technology to work for our customers and improve the overall customer experience, which is one of the areas of focus of our Scorecard initiative," said NJ TRANSIT Executive Director James Weinstein. "By partnering with Google, we are leading the industry with emerging technologies that will streamline the way customers buy their transportation tickets."
Now, NJ TRANSIT customers can use Google Wallet to purchase transportation tickets at New York Penn Station ticket vending machines and ticket windows, Newark Liberty International Airport Rail Station (AirTrain), on bus route nos. 6, 43, 80, 81, 87, and 120, and on some buses on the 126 line.
Currently, Google Wallet is available on Sprint's Nexus S 4G phone and supports Citi MasterCard credit cards and a Google Prepaid Card, with plans to support additional card companies and more Android devices with NFC capabilities in the future. Better still, the partnership was developed at no cost to NJ TRANSIT, so taxpayers that don't own a Wallet-enabled phone yet can breath a sigh of relief. Or, you can buy a Nexus S.