- The feature is available only for Airtel, Vodafone-Idea, Jio and BSNL users across India.
- The search experience is only available to Android users who have signed into their Google accounts.
- This feature is however not available for iPhone users.
Gone are the days when you had to download apps to recharge your phones, now a mere Google search will do the job for you without much ado. Google on Tuesday introduced a new feature to help the users compare and recharge their prepaid plans using Google Search. The feature is available only for Airtel, Vodafone-Idea, Jio and BSNL users across India.
The search experience is only available to Android users who have signed into their Google accounts. You only have to type out Sim Recharge on your Google search bar and in the results, it will ask you to fill your mobile number. In case you have already linked your mobile number with your Gmail account, you wouldn't have to manually enter your phone number. Google will automatically enter your number and detect your operator; it will then provide you with an option to browse all the plans available. Once you select your preferred plan, Google will redirect you to a page with different payment options available such as the Google Pay, Freecharge, Mobiwik and Paytm. You can enter your details if you have any of the payment wallet mentioned above and checkout. If you do not have any of the payment wallets, you can pay via the service providers app.
Once you complete the transaction, you get a confirmation notification and also get an option that says Back to Google. If you select the button, you will be taken back to the Search option.
This feature is however not available for iPhone users and even when you look for Sim Recharge on your Google search bar, you don't get the option to check and compare plans. The tech giant might implement the same for iPhone users once it successfully runs the feature in Android.
However, one thing that raises the eyebrows is that Google didn't ask for permission before automatically entering the registered mobile number on the search bar. The first time users might get a little taken aback after witnessing Google's rather uncalled for promptness. It somewhere breaches the privacy of users as many times you don't want your number to be used without your permission. Nonetheless, as long as Google doesn't disclose your number to a third-party app without your permission it should not really be a problem.
There are over 1.1 billion cellular connections in India, out of which 95 per cent are prepaid connections. Although there are a plethora of options to recharge a phone, this service by Google can definitely make things simpler and hassle-free.