Google gets festive with Android Pay Christmas crackers

Google gets festive with Android Pay Christmas crackers

Google is playing Santa over the holidays, hoping to win converts to its Android Pay service by rewarding Brits who use it with virtual Christmas crackers filled with prizes.

Launched in the UK in May, Android Pay lets people link their credit and debit cards to their handsets to tap and pay at 460,000 contactless terminals across the country, including Transport for London tube, bus and train travel.

While not providing numbers, Google says that its service is growing rapidly as it competes with old-fashioned cards and other mobile-based options such as Apple Pay.

The firm is hoping to build on its momentum with a new promotion running until the end of the year that will see Brits receive a virtual cracker every time they make an instore Android Pay payment.

Crackers will contain over 100,000 gift cards, including £10 at Costa Coffee, pairs of cinema tickets and £500 to spend at House of Fraser. With each of their first five taps, users can also collect virtual coins that earn Costa Coffee gift cards.

Meanwhile, Google has teamed up with Transport for London to revamp the app for commuters, adding a daily travel summary and notifications of incomplete journeys. Separately, a deal with Uber means users will see an Android Pay button in the ride-sharing app.

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