Paying for credit or debit interactions with your smartphone is becoming the norm thanks to systems like Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. Now Google is taking a leap forward with its introduction of Hands Free, an app that allows you to make electronic payments without even having to take your phone out of your pocket.
The app, which works on both Android and iOS, is currently being tested by McDonald’s and Papa John’s in the South Bay area of San Francisco. It works by identifying your face and location. First you have to tell the cashier at participating locations that you want to pay with Google, who will then ask for your initials. Hands Free has a list of all Hands Free-using phones within the range of the specific terminal you’re using. So when the cashier enters your initials they see a list of people close by and match you to your picture in the system.
If having the cashier be able to identify your face sounds too arbitrary, Google is also testing a version where a camera automatically matches you to the system. If the transaction is successful, you’ll receive a notification. This would also be a great warning against potential suspicious activity on your account.
Hands Free is not a part of Android Pay.