July 15, 2015 / 5:13 PM / in 2 years

Google unveils 'buy' button, host of new shopping features

A logo is pictured at Google's European Engineering Center in Zurich April16, 2015. The European Union accused Google Inc on Wednesday of cheating competitors by distorting Internet search results in favour of its Google Shopping service and also launched an antitrust probe into its Android mobile operating system. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

(Reuters) - Google Inc on Wednesday unveiled a new feature called “Purchases on Google,” which allows shopper to buy items directly from mobile search ads.

The eagerly awaited “buy” feature, which Google said it was testing with a few retailers, uses saved payment credentials from the user’s Google Account for transactions.

Both Google and Facebook Inc have been stepping up efforts to advance location-based technology as consumers spend more time on smartphones.

Along with the ads that pull up in search results, shoppers would also get information on product ratings and availability at nearby stores, the Internet search giant said in a blog post. (bit.ly/1J0yF8A)

The additional information will be available on Google Chrome for Android this month, with iOS support to follow in the coming months, the company said.

Google also said its Google Now service would now offer location-based information, including on discounts on items and the working hours of stores a user is close to.

The service will also be able to access a user’s browsing history to show if the price of a product a shopper has searched for in the past has fallen.

Google also said it would work with online e-commerce companies such as eBay Inc, and direct customers to these companies’ mobile apps instead of their websites.

Reporting by Anya George Tharakan in Bengaluru; Editing by Simon Jennings

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