Google Wallet opened for business today, with a boost from new partner Visa (MasterCard was already a partner). And as David Sarno of the L.A. Times reports, Google said it is also working to get American Express and Discover on board for future verions of its pay-by-NFC smartphone software.
But don't go tossing out your thick, coupon-filled George Costanza wallet (see Google's hilarious Seinfeld-inspired Google Wallet ad below) just yet. When the Google Wallet comes out this week, it will only be available to Sprint Nexus S 4G phone users.
"Sprint was one of Google's original partners on the project, so the company's customers get first dibs on trying it out," Sarno writes. "Smartphone commerce will really get kick-started next year when a whole raft of phones are expected to have the crucial technology that makes it possible."
Also, Sarno adds, NFC-enabled credit card terminals are still pretty rare, so it will take time before the payment infrastructure reaches the stores you visit on a daily basis.
To read more about the Google Wallet concept and NFC, check out our article about it from back in May.