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Google readies PayPal-killer

Payment system weeks away

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Google is all set to launch its online payment system, or "PayPal-killer" for the over-dramatic.

According to a note from investment bank RBC Capital Markets the search giant will let people selling goods through Google Base use the system to pay for purchases. GBuy is due to launch 28 June and will initially be limited to Base users.

This will be extended to "Google-approved merchants" later. The service will be free at first but Google wants to charge between 1.5 per cent and 2 per cent of sale price. The service will be targetted at small merchants who are unable, or unwilling, to accept credit card payments.

The "Trusted GBuy Merchant" tag alongside search results may have a beneficial impact on click-through rates. Although ecommerce is growing fast - £18bn last year or 2.5 per cent of household spending - there is still a perception that security fears are holding back some purchases.

Google's brand may help allay these fears. If the search giant was to track purchases too then it would have valuable information to feed back into its search engine.

The announcement, or rather lack of announcement - Google has not confirmed the launch - is widely seen as bad news for market-leading payment system PayPal, owned by eBay.

There's more on how GBuy works and what it looks like here or on the San Jose Mercury News here.®

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