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You’ve probably heard enough about Apple Pay on iPhones and the Apple Watch already, but what about an equivalent for Android users? Beginning with Android M, the next version of Google’s smartphone OS, you’ll be able to swipe a credit card payment using your phone, letting you keep your plastic cards in your pocket (or even at home).

Of course, contactless payments are nothing new — retail stores and subway stations in Japan have been accepting wireless payments for more than a decade, and Google’s even dabbled with NFC payments off and on since 2011, but with Apple’s recent adoption, banks, merchants and phone manufacturers are really stepping up their NFC (near-field communication) game.

According to a Google blog post, Android Pay is coming later this year, with support from American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa. You’ll be able to pay at 700,000-plus stores across the US, and potentially some around the world as well. Several plastic credit cards already support contactless payments, including the Chase Freedom card and the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express. With both of these cards, you can simply tap the card to a reader to pay, just as you’ll eventually do with an Android smartphone.

Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

There’s no telling how much longer these cards will be around and available for new applications because of the Marriott takeover, so now might just be the perfect time to apply. Apart from hotel redemptions, you can transfer Starpoints to over 30 airline partners, and now also transfer points from Starwood to Marriott Rewards at a 1:3 ratio, opening up even more redemption options.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 Starpoints® for each dollar of eligible purchases spent on the Card at participating SPG® & Marriott Rewards® hotels. Earn 1 Starpoint for all other purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on International purchases.
  • Receive free in-room, premium internet access. Booking requirements apply.
  • Redeem Starpoints® at over 1,300 participating hotels and resorts in over 100 countries and for flights on more than 150 airlines with SPG flights, all with no blackout dates.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms and Conditions apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
15.74%-19.74% Variable
Annual Fee
$0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
Balance Transfer Fee
3.00%
Recommended Credit
Excellent Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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