Google Wallet has been chosen as a 2012 Paybefore Awards Best in Category winner in the Best Virtual, Digital, or Mobile Prepaid Application and Most Innovative Prepaid Program categories.

Paybefore Awards, now in its sixth year, is the most prestigious recognition of excellence in the worldwide prepaid and stored value card industry. The awards are presented annually by Paybefore, whose publications are the leading source of industry information for the global prepaid community.

“As one of the technology providers enabling the Google Wallet, we are proud that Google Wallet received two Best in Category wins,” says Dom Morea, SVP and division manager, Advanced Solutions and Innovation, First Data. “This recognition is not only a great achievement for Google Wallet and all the partners, but for merchants, financial institutions, and their customers who understand the value and convenience of mobile payments.”

Google Wallet, nominated by First Data, Google, and MasterCard, was selected by a panel of five industry experts who served as judges for this year’s competition, which included entries from around the world.

“Paybefore Awards was created to honor the companies and individuals that are keeping prepaid on the cutting edge of payments,” says Loraine DeBonis, Paybefore editor-in-chief and chair of the judging panel. “Our industry continues to break new ground and expand the reach of electronic payments because of companies like Google, MasterCard, and First Data, who make innovation and execution a priority. We are proud to recognize their contributions to advancing the prepaid industry.”

Launched in September 2011 by Google, Sprint, First Data, Citi and MasterCard, Google Wallet is an application that turns your phone into your wallet. It stores virtual versions of your exist¬ing credit and debit cards, along with your coupons, loyalty cards and gift cards. Google Wallet can be used to tap and pay at 150,000 merchants nationwide via MasterCard’s PayPass network. 

“At MasterCard, we’re constantly looking for ways to help people make secure and convenient purchases when and how they want,” says Mung Ki Woo, group executive, mobile, at MasterCard. “By working with our partners on Google Wallet, we’ve been able to pair our PayPass technology with the mobile phone to help simplify people’s lives and give them a compelling new way to shop, pay, and save.”

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