Google Pay to Launch Its Services in Israel This Week

The service will enable Israelis to make payments at sales points fully supporting the required EMV standard

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The Google Pay app.
The Google Pay app.Credit: Jens Buttner/dpa/AFP

Technology giant Google is expected to begin offering its pay services and additional services to Israeli consumers this week, TheMarker has learned.

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Following the launch, which was postponed several times, Israeli customers (with smartphones with Android 5 operating systems and above) will be able to make payments using Google Pay at sales points fully supporting the required EMV standard. To enable customers to pay via Google Pay, credit card companies and banks, including Isracard, Max, and Bank Leumi entered into agreements with Google.

Google will become the second technology giant to enter Israel in the field of mobile payments after Apple Pay, which began operating in the country last May. Apple Pay’s entrance into the market led to a sharp increase in the use of digital wallets, despite the fact that iPhone owners are believed to make up no more than 25 percent of the overall number of smartphone owners in Israel.

Most Israelis use the Android operating system. Even prior to the entrance of Google Pay, Android owners were able to use one of several local digital wallets available on the market.

These wallets belong to the three credit card companies, Isracard, Max and Visa CAL, and also to the four big banks – Bank Hapoalim via Bit, Bank Discount with PayBox and Bank Leumi and First International Bank, which have their own digital payment apps. However, prior to the launch of Apple Pay, use of digital wallets among the public was minimal.

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