Alas, Microsoft Wallet, we never knew thee. Literally, in the UK...

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Microsoft Wallet, introduced (or at least demo-ed) in 2012, should have been a viable alternative for Apple Pay and then Android Pay, but - as with Windows Phone and then Windows 10 Mobile itself, the company clearly didn't believe in investing in it. Starved of development resources, Microsoft Wallet was still in the early stages of 'rolling out' in mid-2017, unbelievably, five years after the initial demo. And it never made it outside of the USA, I believe. Yes, it's not trivial to work with hundreds of banks worldwide, but two or three agreements made in five years is just downright lazy.

What Microsoft doesn't get is that by under-developing an idea and then pulling all resources from it there's precisely zero chance of it taking off. As they used to day here in the UK, 'you've got to be in it to win it'. With phone-based payment and indeed phone OS generally, Microsoft literally wrote themselves out of the game. So they have to work with someone else's platform and someone else's payment system.

The Microsoft Wallet page now shows:


A stark message affecting only a few hundred users at this point, by my estimates. 28 February 2019 is the last day of Wallet support.

And I'm not the first to point out that this is a nail in the coffin of the Andromeda project coming to fruition as a phone-like device, since such hardware would also need native 'tap to pay'. Instead, Andromeda has been sent back to the drawing board and, if it appears at all, will likely be a tablet-esque device, designed to be used with an existing iPhone or Android handset. Each with their own payment solutions, of course.

Source / Credit: Microsoft