If you haven’t already seen enough activity with Google Pay in the last month, there are a few notable things happening in the last couple updates. Version 2.80 brings changes to the notification settings screen by dropping the long list of loyalty cards and adopting a new setting to notify you about places those cards can be used. A teardown also reveals upcoming notification channels and a brand new feature that will automatically import relevant tickets and passes when they arrive in your Gmail account.
Unofficial Changelog: (the stuff we found)
- Added: Notifications for places you can use passes
Notification: Where you can use passes
Left: v2.79. Right: v2.80.
The only thing that appears to have visually changed in this update is the screen for notification settings. The first adjustment comes in the form of a new toggle for a notification that will let you know if you’re in or near places where you can use your loyalty programs, reward cards, and so on. This is basically the same as the setting that tells you about places where you can use Google Pay for transaction, but with the distinct difference that it’s for promotional payment and discount methods rather than outright payments.
Also note that this is distinct from the setting right below it, which lets you know if there are changes to your passes; except that one is referring to things like boarding passes and event tickets rather than loyalty programs. Hmmm, maybe “passes” isn’t the best word to use for two different things.
Individual loyalty toggles removed
If you try to scroll a bit further down in the notifications screen, you’ll also notice the toggles for all of your different loyalty cards have been removed. No reason has been given, but it’s probably a safe bet that very few users were enabling or disabling cards one-by-one.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android’s application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information. It’s possible that the guesses made here are wrong or inaccurate. Even when predictions are correct, there is always a chance that products could change or may be canceled. Much like rumors, nothing is certain until it’s officially announced and released.The features discussed below are probably not live yet, or may only be live for a small percentage of users. Unless stated otherwise, don’t expect to see these features if you install the apk. All screenshots and images are real unless otherwise stated, and images are only altered to remove personal information.
Notification channels [v2.79]
Most of the other Google apps have adopted disparate notification channels for the various purposes that might come up, but Pay managed to slip under the radar for quite some time. It looks like this one is finally joining the movement as the names and descriptions for eight different channels and five groups have been added.
- Where you can use passes
Find out where you can use your loyalty programs, rewards cards, and more
- Where you can pay in store
Find out when you’re near a store that accepts Google Pay
- Where you can use passes
- Send & request money
Get notified when someone sends you money, or requests it
Get notified about your scheduled reminders to send or request money
Stay up-to-date on events and flights, or when your saved offers are about to expire
- Important updates
Stay up-to-date on account and payment method issues
- Payment activity
See transaction details after you make a purchase
- Offers & tips
Get offers and tips relevant to you
- Offers & tips
Follow-up: Nicknaming payment methods [v2.79]
We’ve already seen that it will be possible to nickname payment methods, but the feature has yet to go life. In a slight tweak from the previous version we saw, there are now labels for a button that will either add or edit nicknames.
It’s not really a significant change, but I wanted to point it out just to show that there’s still activity here.
Linking to Gmail
Many of the things we sign up for or buy online usually end up passing through our email accounts in some form or another. If most of those things are traveling through Gmail, you’re about to have an easier time moving them over to Google Pay. Descriptions have been added for a new feature that will prompt users to enable Google Pay to import things like tickets, passes, and special offers directly from your Gmail account.
No other details are given, but this seems fairly straightforward. I haven’t seen any signs that this has gone live yet, but I suspect it’s probably not finished yet. At the very least, features like this typically have labels to indicate which things were imported automatically, otherwise users tend to get confused if they’re seeing something that shouldn’t be in the app.
Automatic imports will definitely be a big help for people that book a lot of travel and event tickets. It’s not that those are difficult to add, but it’s always good to remove the manual steps.
The APK is signed by Google and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Rather than wait for Google to push this download to your devices, which can take days, download and install it just like any other APK.