Could Google Become a New Leader in Fintech?
Fintech is revolutionising the financial landscape and completely changing how people manage their finances. Today, we have more and more startups entering the sector looking to help deliver improved financial services to consumers. The fast-paced growth of this industry has not only caught the eye of financial institutions, but big tech companies as well. One of these big tech companies is Google, and with hundreds of millions of consumers under their belt, they could very well prove to be a large threat to fintech startups. In this article, we’ll discuss whether Google has the potential to become a fintech heavyweight. Let’s get into it!
How Google Is Entering the Fintech Space
Google made it’s first venture into the financial services sphere when it launched Google Pay back in 2015 (formerly known as Android Pay). Since its introduction, it has become extremely popular as a payment method for users worldwide and now has 150 million users in 30 different countries. The success of the platform has encouraged Google to launch other financial services, including:
- A Google checking account
Google will soon begin offering checking accounts to consumers. They expect to launch the accounts this year in partnership with Citigroup and Stanford Federal credit union. The checking accounts will be launched via Google Pay and will allow users to gain deep financial insights and undergo a new banking experience.
- Google debit card
The tech giant also looks set to develop its own physical and virtual debit cards in the future. In April 2020, Tech Crunch obtained imagery that confirmed this. This service will allow users to spend online and in-store while also allowing users to monitor their purchases and check their balance all through a Google app.
Why Google Has Massive Potential
Google has a huge customer base and owns the two most visited websites on the Internet – Google and YouTube. With such a large and dominant presence, they would already have an audience who would gladly make use of their fintech offerings.
Fintech services would undoubtedly provide another revenue stream. However, their ads platform is their most profitable service, and by collecting transaction data through their fintech offerings, they could collect even more data on their users. This data could help improve their ad targeting and create the most effective ad platform and search engine out there.
Whatever Google’s motivations are for offering fintech services, they are sitting on substantial cash reserves, have vast engineering talent, and extensive data on their users, which would give them an edge over financial institutions and fintech startups.
Should Fintechs Fear Google?
Google certainly pose a threat to fintech startups. They have access to a massive amount of resources that fintech startups simply cannot match. However, they are a little late to the game. Fintech startups have been building their customer bases over the last decade or so, and it’s unlikely these customers will all be in a mad rush to switch over to Google. Google will have to offer superior services from what’s already available on the market. A tall order but definitely not impossible.