Google Picks Up Bump, a Team with a History in Mobile Payments

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The team behind Bump Technologies has become a part of Google, a move that could potentially combine both companies' payments initiatives.

Bump allows users to tap their mobile phones together to transfer information in a process that uses the phones' motion sensors to simulate the sort of transaction that can be done with Near Field Communication technology. Bump has used its software to let users exchange contact information and initiate PayPal transfers.

“We strive to create experiences that feel like magic, enabled behind the scene with innovations in math, data processing and algorithms,” says David Lieb, CEO and cofounder of Bump, in a Sept. 16 blog post. “So we couldn’t be more thrilled to join Google, a company that shares our belief that the application of computing to difficult problems can fundamentally change the way that we interact with one another and the world.”

The Bump app and the Flock app, a social photo-sharing Web browser, will work as usual, but Lieb says they will receive updates in the future.

In an emailed statement, Google confirmed the deal and said the Bump team would be a "great fit" at Google.

Bump's software used to be a part of PayPal's mobile app, but it was removed from the app in early 2012. Bump maintained the PayPal transfer function as part of its own app, called Bump Pay.

Google's own payment app, Google Wallet, relies heavily on NFC. However, Google's most recent revisions to Google Wallet suggest it plans to distance some of its functions from NFC technology.

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