Can't say we're surprised to hear this at all, but Bloomberg BusinessWeek
says Google's working on its own NFC
-based mobile payments system. That makes perfect sense, given that Eric Schmidt has been enthusiastically extolling the virtues of NFC
since just before Google launched the Nexus S
-- which, of course, features an NFC chip. BusinessWeek
says the system might launch as early as this year, although we think Google's got plenty of infrastructure work to do first -- and it's facing plenty of competition from the likes of Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T, who are launching their own Isis payment system
, as well as direct device competition from RIM
. Should get interesting -- we'll see if we hear anything at CES this week.