(credit: Android Pay)

Android Pay, Alphabet’s successor to Google Wallet and its answer to Apple Pay, is allowing in-app purchases starting today. This is a feature that Apple Pay has had since day one, and it’s a feature that Google Wallet had until late 2014, when Google (now Alphabet) shuttered that feature.

The advantage of including in-app payments through a platform like Android Pay is that developers can add an Android Pay logo to their check-out sections, and users, who ideally have their card information stored with Android Pay already, can check out with a single tap (and then a second tap just to confirm the user’s information). No need for a customer to fumble for their credit card every time they need to buy something in a new app. The hope for app developers is that an easier checkout leads to more sales—there's less second-guessing if you shorten the time it takes to make the purchase.

Android Pay launched in early September, almost a year after Apple Pay launched. Android’s payment platform was essentially a rebranded version of Google Wallet’s original form, allowing users to make payments in select brick-and-mortar stores by tapping their phones to check-out terminals using near field communications (NFC). Today, with the addition of in-app payments, Android Pay becomes a real competitor for market share with Apple Pay.

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