Can you use Face Unlock on Pixel 7 for mobile payments?

Unlocking the Pixel 7 with my face
(Image credit: Derrek Lee / Android Central)

Can you use the Face Unlock on Pixel 7 for mobile payments?

Best answer: No. Unfortunately, while face unlock is available as a feature for the Google Pixel 7, it won’t work if you are trying to use biometric authentication to make a mobile payment. You’ll have to revert to either fingerprint unlock or using your password and/or PIN in order to pay for an item at a compatible terminal with the Pixel 7.

What is Face Unlock and How Does it Work?

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Face unlock is a feature you'll find in many premium phones nowadays. By analyzing various parts of your face using biometric software, including where your eyes are placed, the width of your nose, and other distinct features, the phone will develop a unique code that can identify you. When you hold the phone up to your face, it will unlock once you are recognized. 

Face unlock can also work for other purposes, like opening a specific app for which you have face ID enabled. With Apple iPhones, you can also use face unlock to make a digital payment with Apple Pay. 

However, the face unlock payment feature doesn't work with the Google Pixel 7. The face unlock feature for this new phone, in fact, will only work for actually unlocking the device after it has automatically locked following a set duration of time. If you try to make a Google Pay transaction using face unlock, it will be declined. You'll then be prompted to use the fingerprint scanner or unlock the phone using your password and PIN and try again. Once the phone is unlocked, tap it against an NFC-enabled payment terminal, and the transaction will work without a hitch. However, it may work with transit purchases since these don't require a phone to be unlocked in the U.S. 

It's possible the face unlock on Pixel 7 issue could be rectified with a software update at some point. But for now, you can't use face unlock with a Google Pixel to make a payment. Fans hope Google will make a chance to keep the Pixel 7 in line with the best Android phones that do allow for face unlocking to pay.

Christine Persaud is a freelance writer for Android Central who has been writing about tech since long before the smartphone was even a "thing." When she isn't writing, she's probably working on her latest fitness program, binging a new (or old) TV series, tinkering with tech gadgets, or spending time with her school-aged son. A self-professed TV nerd, lover of red wine, and passionate home cook, she's immersed in tech in every facet of her life. Follow her at @christineTechCA.