NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Google (GOOG) made a flurry of interesting announcements Thursday at its I/O developer conference, including the introduction of Android Pay.

Like Apple's  (AAPL) Apple Pay, Android Pay will allow merchants to accept tap-to-pay transactions at the store, as well as purchases made on mobile apps. So far, about 7,000 merchants have agreed to accept Android Pay. People with Android M devices will be able to authorize payments with their fingerprints, similar to how Apple Pay works with Touch ID.

A feature called Chrome Custom Tab will let developers use Google's browser within their apps, so they don't have to build their own from scratch.

The company also launched a new photo and video service with unlimited storage. The interface of makes it easy to scan through years of photos. The app also can be used to create collages, animations, and movies with soundtracks. Playing catch-up to Apple, Google announced that HBO's standalone streaming service, HBO Now, will head to Chromecast and Android devices.

Last year, Google showed off its lo-fi virtual reality headset, which can be constructed from cardboard. The headset has since been redesigned so it takes only three steps to construct and can fit phones with displays of up to 6 inches. The software developer kit will now support iOS as well as Android.

Google also announced Expeditions, which will let students take field trips to far-flung parts of the globe using Cardboard. To create immersive video for virtual reality, Google previewed a new multicamera array that can shoot videos in 360 degrees. Though the idea is to make this system, called Jump, available to anyone, Google also tapped GoPro (GPRO) to build and sell its own array with 16 Hero4 cameras.

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