A PIN code might soon be required before tap-to-pay with Google Wallet for Wear OS

A PIN code might soon be required before tap-to-pay with Google Wallet for Wear OS

There are currently very few situations of this kind; Wear OS users were never asked for a PIN prior to making a Google Wallet payment. All they had to do was launch the watch app and tap.

Since we haven’t been able to reproduce this on many Pixel Watch 2 transactions today, it might still be a test, a rolling release, or simply an app bug. However, this change makes some sense given that it follows the new phone behavior.

This change is obviously motivated by security concerns, yet it feels rather sudden. One advantage of having a watch is that it is constantly with you. Wear OS is already rather cautious when it comes to requesting the PIN if it senses that the watch has been taken off your wrist excessively. This adds to the uncertainty around today’s shift, suggesting in a way that Google Wallet doesn’t trust Wear OS security.

This new behavior probably means that tapping an app for the first time will always fail unless you know to open it first (if there is a prompt or user interface) either through the app list/grid, the Quick Settings Tile on the Pixel Watch, or by having it as a shortcut on your watch face.

As a result, you have to double-tap the side button if you want to pay with the Apple Watch.

You have three minutes after first unlocking your phone to utilize Google Wallet. After that, unless you open the app to “Verify it’s you” or unless you always lock/unlock your device before making a payment, tap-to-pay will not work and you will need to authenticate and tap again.

Google revealed earlier this week that this was a deliberate phone upgrade that was formally released under the title “Google Wallet enhances in-store payment experience with new authentication update”: “Google Wallet contactless payments have never been safer. You can now choose to disable identity verification for transit fares and be requested to verify your identity before completing a payment using a PIN, pattern, fingerprint, or Class 3 biometric unlock.

However, the form factor is not specified in the new support document. It doesn’t specifically address smartwatches; it’s obviously talking about phones.

Wear OS may have offered an alternative for those annoyed by the phone transition, but not with this new behavior. There is no question that using your fingerprint to unlock is more convenient than using a PIN on a tiny screen. (In regards to Wear OS and PINs, the Pixel Watch needs to start supporting more than four numbers.)

Topics #Google #Google Wallet #news #Operating System #OS #PIN code #Pixel #Pixel Watch #Pixel Watch 2 #Wear OS

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