Softcard is to shutter its Windows Phone app for easy contact-less payments on March 31st 2015.
It is no secret that Google doesn’t really much care for Windows Phone. The Mountain View firm has made a point of excluding the OS on almost every turn, with access to the likes of YouTube in particular being denied. One lone Google-branded app inhabits the Windows Phone Store, a simple search app that allows users quick access to Google services.
As such, when it was announced that Google would become heavily involved with Softcard, many users of Windows Phone became antsy.
Though the use of NFC on mobile devices for contact-less payments has become more and more popular in recent years, particularly with the debut of Apple Pay earlier in 2014, Windows Phone has mostly been left by the roadside. Softcard was almost unique in offering users in the US the ability to make payments using their Windows Phone device, as many larger firms have opted to ignore the OS completely.
Therefore, when Softcard announced that its services would be rolled into Google Wallet, and that its Windows Phone app would be scuttled, few were surprised. Now a set date has been provided, after which users will no longer be able to make payments using the app.
Softcard will cease to function on March 31, 2015.
Users should also note that Windows Phone is not alone in this move. Softcard apps for both Android and iOS are also to be withdrawn from their respective app stores, after Google acquired Softcard technologies from the trio of US mobile carriers that jointly developed them, and agreed to carry Google Wallet on all Android phones they sell.
Regardless, this is another painful development for US-based users of Windows Phone. Hopefully another option will emerge soon.
Are you a Softcard user on a Windows Phone device? How do you view this move? Let us know in the comments below.Further reading: Google, Microsoft, Softcard, Windows Phone