Google Rolls out Android Pay in Ukraine, Partners with PrivatBank

United States tech giant Google has launched its contactless payment service for smartphones Android Pay in Ukraine.

On Nov. 1, Ukraine became the 15th country in the world to have Google’s Android Pay.

The service offers a digital wallet developed by Google to power in-app and tap-to-pay purchases on mobile devices, allowing users to make payments with Android-based phones, tablets or watches.

In Ukraine, the service currently works with credit cards supported by MasterCard and Visa which are issued by PrivatBank, Ukraine’s largest bank. Dmytro Krepak, Visa country manager for Ukraine, Georgia and Armenia, said that PrivatBank representatives convinced Android Pay to enter Ukraine.

Krepak also believes the rollout of the service will make Ukrainians more willing to make contactless, technology-driven payments benefitting the global economy.

“Android Pay rollout will give a real boost to developing cashless society here in Ukraine,”

Krepak told the Kyiv Post. He says this can also bring Apple Pay, a similar payment service run by Apple, to Ukraine since Google’s entrance means that “Ukraine’s infrastructure is ready.”

Google will partner with at least three other banks by the end of 2017. Oschadbank, Ukraine’s second largest bank, will adopt the service by December. Commercial Raiffeisen Bank Aval will join shortly after, according to Ukraine’s tech journal

Android Pay works only on smartphones that have at least an Android 4.4 operating system and a device has to support near-field communication, a set of communication protocols that allow two electronic devices to establish connection when they are close.

Ukrainian entrprises like Silpo, Fora, McDonald’s, WOG, OKKO, and Kyiv’s underground subway system already support the service. In fact, Android Pay works in any place where there are terminals that support contactless payments.

According to MasterCard Ukraine CEO Vira Platonova, 65 percent of Ukraine’s payment terminals are contactless. “This is one of the highest rates (of contactless terminals) in Europe,” Platonova said on Nov. 1 during a press conference in Kyiv.

All the transactions are secure, says Visa’s Krepak. The app does not save the number of a bank card, but instead generates a temporary code.

Android Pay can be used in any country where the service is available such as the U.S., Canada, Poland, Singapore, Japan and Russia.

Source: KyivPost