Newspaper publishers and other media entities have made no secret about their desire to put content up behind a pay wall. The motivation behind it all is the slow death of traditional media and the loss of revenue that has come along with it.
Now, Google is planning to assist that effort by developing a micropayment platform that can help facilitate the paywall plans. It will be an extension of Google Checkout and be available for both Google and non-Google sites.
Of course, it remains to be seen if these paywall plans even work. Most newspapers had them in place when they first launched on the web. They didn't work, and the paywalls came down.
Google's smart to monetize the upcoming paywall efforts while they last. But don't be surprised if the micropayment platform ends up in the Google product graveyard if the paywall plans do indeed fail.