Updated 06:18 PM EST, Tue, Nov 24, 2020

Everything Google: Android Pay, Instagram Food Calorie Counter & More Developments Here

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Google Inc. continuous to introduce new features to make Android users' lives generally easier and better; the Internet giant released its most awaited mobile payment service Android Pay in late May.

The newest addition to Android's features—similar to the Apple Pay for iPhone and iPad users—is expected to be better since Google announced that it would not collect any transaction fees, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.

According to WSJ, Android Pay would not charge its users extra since "evolving ground rules for the service" were initiated by the dominant payment firms Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc.

This is expected to put enough pressure on Apple to reconsider its terms with users of Apple Pay where the company made an arrangement with credit card issuers that they would receive a cut of 0.15 percent for credit and 0.5 percent debit card purchase.

On the other hand, Google has decided to offer the payment feature for free by using Visa's tokenization service, wherein credit card data such as account number, security codes and expiry dates are swapped with a string of numbers unique for every single card holder.

These numbers are the so-called "tokens" and can only be used for a single time to preserve the privacy of the card holders' data since they are never shared with merchants.

In related news, after seeing how users of photo-sharing platforms are very fond of making food the subject of their posts, Google is trying out a new calorie-counting feature for the users of the popular Android photo-sharing app Instagram (IG).

New York Daily has learned that Google's new project, which was unveiled during the first week of June and dubbed as "Im2Calories," has an algorithm designed to analyze photos of foods and determine their approximate calorie content.

Google Science Expert Kevin Murphy explained that while the experimental project only works for only about 30 percent of the time, it is enough to engage people to use it and make data collection easier. It is also perceived as their first step towards improving the app as a whole. 

"To me it's obvious that people really want this and this is really useful. OK fine, maybe we get the calories off by 20 percent. It doesn't matter. We're going to average over a week or a month or a year. And now we can start to potentially join information from multiple people and start to do population level statistics," Murphy said.

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