The much-hyped and eagerly anticipated GBuy from Google has now arrived, under the new name of "Google Checkout". Being described as a middleman between retailers and credit card companies, we've all heard about this new product and Google's intentions for it. While they say the service is not really intended to compete with PayPal, it offers some very interesting features to the security-conscious consumer that may lure some PayPal users away. The biggest thing to note is how participating vendors will never actually get access to a customer's credit card number - all that information will stay on Google's servers only. Many large companies are already endorsing Google Checkout:
One giant credit card issuer, Citigroup, will promote the service to its card holders. "Our objective ... is to encourage our card holders to do the majority of their Web spending through their Citi Cards," says Rob Rosenblatt, executive vice president of e-business for Citi Cards. "If card holders feel more secure, it dramatically increases the likelihood that they'll make the transaction."
Google has placed a tour of Google Checkout up that you can look at to get a feel of what the experience would be like. It does look very similar to the fast checkout via PayPal that you see on many sites. If you're interested, you can try it out now at Google's site.