AT&T Samsung Galaxy Note 3′s Android 4.4.2 update got leaked recently, but is yet to rollout officially. This build has so far been successful in winning over many hearts, reports have now confirmed something that might not be appreciated by a lot of users, the famous “Tap & Pay” option is absent in this particular update.
Android 4.4.2 update leaks for AT&T Note 3
In addition, host card emulation seems to be disabled too. Instead, Isis Mobile Wallet is enabled instead, and is a new feature not found on the Android 4.3 firmware for the Note 3. Isis is partially backed by AT&T, so it suggests there might be some favoritism going on here.
Host card emulation on an Android device allows any NFC enabled phone to be used for mobile payments – the big benefit being the device doesn’t need a secure element to do so, which has held back many phones from being used with Google Wallet. The “Tap & Pay” option which is missing from the AT&T 4.4 firmware enabled this emulation, and allows users to pick a default app for mobile payments. As it turns out, installing Google Wallet on an AT&T Note 3 running Android 4.4 results in an error, as the app can’t find a valid payment method (ie, no host card emulation).
This seems a bit of a dirty move by AT&T, and it sucks to have carriers force their own systems and interests on users who are paying good money for their device and services. It’s obvious that they have a vested interest in not having Google Wallet enabled, and pushing customers to Isis instead.
However, the firmware is just a leak and is likely not the final build. This means that this could all change, and “Tap & Pay” could easily make a comeback. For the time being though, there’s no Google Wallet for those on a Note 3 with AT&T.
Click here to download the leaked Android 4.4.2 update for AT&T Note 3. If you’ve found anything else exciting in the new firmware, let us know.