MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. and SAN FRANCISCO (5/22/13)--Google and mobile payment company Square have launched separate initiatives that allow consumers to send payments via e-mail.
Google will integrate its digital Google Wallet with Gmail so users can send money to friends and family even if they don't have a Gmail address, Google announced last week (CNet May 15).
To send money in Gmail, users must hover over an attachment paperclip, click the "$" icon to attach money to the message, enter the amount, and press send.
Sending money via Gmail is currently available only on desktop computers. The service will be free.
Square also added a cash-by-e-mail feature, called Square Cash. The service is "invite only" (Cnet May 20)
To use Square Cash, users draft an e-mail to the recipient, CC: it to firstname.lastname@example.org, enter a dollar amount in the subject line, and send the e-mail.
The recipient will be asked to associate a debit card with the transfer, after which the money will be sent directly to the banking account linked to it.
The sender will be charged a 50-cent fee for Square Cash.