The future of NFC payments on Google Wallet may be a bit brighter with the announcement today that Google Wallet will technically work for tap and pay without a secure element or carrier approval, but nothing will change until we see how Android 4.4 makes it to these carrier devices.
If you are coming from another Nexus device and getting a Nexus 5, functionally nothing has changed in terms of Google Wallet NFC payments. Google wallet tap and pay already doesn’t work on Verizon, where the Nexus 5 isn’t headed anyway. It is supported on the Sprint Galaxy Nexus, as well as with any unlocked Galaxy Nexus or Nexus 4 with a T-Mobile, AT&T or other U.S. GSM carrier SIM — the same being true for the Nexus 5.
Let’s just hang tight on this one and see how it plays out — we all know the wireless industry is far from a world of absolutes.
I hate carriers and always will, especially in North America.