WhatsApp to add new payments feature


Mobile messaging service WhatsApp is set to introduce an instant money transfer feature in its next update, according to WhatsApp-dedicated news blog WABetaInfo.

The update, submitted through the Google Play Beta Program, will allow WhatApp users to instantly transfer money through the messaging platform. A hidden preview for the payments feature was unearthed by WABetaInfo.

“This update does not include visible features and changes, but there is a hidden preview about a future feature in WhatsApp.”

WhatsApp appears close to fully integrating bank-to-bank payments on its platform, WABetaInfo said.

The full release of the payments service “should be available when all business services are released for all users,” the blog said.

WhatsApp is in discussions with the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) and the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to facilitate the transfer of funds via the country’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI).

Launched in 2016, the UPI provides a single interface mobile payments system to enable the sending and receiving of money via smartphones using a single identifier (such as emails, mobile numbers or social security numbers).

A number of rival messaging services, including WeChat and Hike Messenger, have already integrated UPI-based payments.