Aug 1st, 2012

Google Wallet has just gotten the most important update it will probably ever get (except for support for more retailers, of course). The app now allows you to add any credit or debit card from the four major vendors of the world: Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express.

Whereas before you could only use a Citi Mastercard or use the prepaid debit card option inside Google Wallet, you can now use whoever you want. This is great for those who’d rather not go through the hassle of adding cash to their virtual prepaid debit card just to use Google Wallet.

It was a major area of resistance for me, especially, because my bank treats a transfer to a prepaid debit card as a standard wire transfer, and those cost me a LOT of money if I get to doing too many of them.

Now, whatever’s in my account is accessible from Google Wallet without the added cumbersome of having to transfer funds (which defeated the purpose of having a simplified, streamlined service).

The update also adds cloud support so you can disable a card or the entire service remotely. This is great for situations where you happen to lose your phone and you want to make sure no one can purchase items with your account whatsoever. Go ahead and grab the upgrade from the Google Play Store.

[Update]: several Verizon users are able to download the app from the web version of the Google Play Store without fail. We’re not sure if this is intentional or if Verizon is finally officially supported, but get over to the Play Store and try to download it either way. And if that doesn’t work, you can always side-load the app using this APK.