Google's New Cash Grab That Jeopardizes Freedom

December 29, 2020

How many payment apps do you have on your phone right now?

Venmo? CashApp? PayPal? ApplePay? GooglePay?

Then you’ve probably got at least one banking app, most people I know have at least two. And then at least one app for investment accounts.

Google Pay’s new relaunch has a solution for you.

Its new super-app style includes tap-to-pay, peer-to-peer, personal finance aggregations, customizable deals and even full banking services. The app has three distinct tabs.

Pay allows for tap-to-pay and peer-to-peer transactions. Explore is where Google can offer you deals and discounts.

The third tab is the most interesting to me. The insights tab allows Google to analyze all your spending and give you and overview.

Yes, you can now give Google access to all your banking information and it will perform Google Analytics on your spending habits. You can even give the app permission to look through your email and photos to find receipts allowing for more nuanced analysis.

On top of all this Google Pay is launching a banking service called Plex.

So far, Google has partnered with 11 banks and credit unions that in 2021 will offer full banking services through Google Pay.

Google has also announced that payment transfers will now have to take place through the app and not on the web. Just one more push towards the app based e-commerce landscape.

I’m not here to promote Google Pay…or get into the discussion over whether or not you should give Google access to your banking history. But after Google Pay announced the relaunch, Google Pay jumped in downloads on both the Apple and Google Play app stores.

It’s now the top finance app on Google Play and the fifth most popular finance app on Apple. Google Pay has been installed 410,000 times from Apple’s App Store this year…compared with 82,000 installs in 2019.

You might not even have to carry your wallet with you anymore.

The explosion in digital and contactless payments was yet another bonus from the pandemic. And this is a trend that will continue into 2021.

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Square (NYSE: SQ) who owns CashApp has seen share prices skyrocket 241% since the beginning of the year.

And of course, we can’t have this conversation without mentioning PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL).

PayPal is for sure the grandpa of payment companies. It hit the scene in 1998 and made it easy for people to trust sending payments for eBay sales. The company also owns Venmo which was more aimed at peer-to-peer transfers instead of e-commerce.

Share of PayPal are up 116% since the beginning of the year.

If, and it’s a big if, people are willing to give Google more access to their lives, the Google Pay super-app could edge out the competition. One app that replaces 4 or more apps seems like a good idea. Then again, we have to remember people are creatures of habit.

This is for sure a trend I’ll be keeping an eye on in 2021.

It’s clear that 2020 was the year to establish the importance of these apps, and now we’ll start to see the improvements as these big three fight to take clear market lead.

To your prosperity and health,

Joshua M. Belanger
Executive Publisher & Founder

Joshua M. Belanger
Joshua Belanger is founder of CounterVest and the editor of Hot Money Trader. He has been providing ordinary investors blockbuster returns since 2008. In 2018, the average return of Hot Money Trader beat the markets by over 15%

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