While still touting the newest addition to the Nexus line as a “Google phone”, reports have it that the new Ice Cream Sandwich device will launch on Verizon without Google Wallet. Google Wallet is intended to allow users to pay in store simply by using their phone, instead of having to use their credit card at time of purchase. The information is saved in the Google Cloud, and also allows you to pay for purchases online by signing into your Google Wallet account (Google already offered this as Google Checkout before launching the mobile payment initiative).
There has been a lot of speculation as to why Google Wallet will not be available on the Galaxy Nexus. The big US mobile carriers, including Verizon, have already invested in similar solutions, thus making it unattractive to provide Google Wallet. Verizon has countered, suggesting that it is a hardware limitation that they are working with Google on to resolve.
One thing that consumers can rest easy knowing is that outside of this one issue, the Galaxy Nexus appears to still be a “pure Google” superphone, in that updates will come directly from Google, and that the device will be carrier unlocked.