Report: Google Might Buy an Apple Pay Rival

By Chris Mills on at

Apple Pay hasn't quite been the card-busting life-changing revolution that some might've expected, but even so, it's humming along quite nicely. Well enough, in fact, that an envious Google may buy up mobile payments company Softcard to provide a little competition.

According to a TechCrunch report, Google is in talks to acquire the mobile payments vendor formerly known as ISIS for around £66 million. The company is a joint venture between AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile US, and basically works a lot like Apple Pay by letting you use the NFC in your phone (or a case) to pay for stuff without all that hard work of getting a card out.

Softcard never really took off, and the company is in a financial tough spot, burning nearly£330,000 per day and recently laying off 60 employees. That probably accounts for the low price — £66 million is bargain basement price for a mature, functioning mobile payments system with the backing of the US phone networks. According to the report, PayPal and Microsoft are also thinking about snapping the company up. Did someone say bidding war? [TechCrunch]