Instant Messaging Application, WhatsApp owned by Facebook Inc, is now looking to expand their arms in the Indian market. Reports are that, within next 6 months, Whatsapp will now be launching Peer-to-Peer (P2P) payment services in India. With this initiative, WhatsApp maybe giving tough competition to the Paytm, the payments application backed by China’s Alibaba.
When asked about the initiative, WhatsApp declined to discuss its plans for payments in India but said it was exploring ways to support the government’s “Digital India” drive.
According to a report by GlobeWebIndex.net India and South Africa have the largest users base of WhatsApp around the world. Last month, WhatsApp has announced that it had crossed 200 million monthly active users in India and has the total of 1.2 Billion actives users around the globe.
WhatsApp has miserably failed to impress its 1.2Billion users with its previous update, which includes a story timeline, inspired from Facebook’s other arm Instagram. Hopefully, WhatsApp will get back to the audience with this initiative.
According to a report from The Ken, WhatsApp which has no team or office in India will be hiring a Digital Transaction Lead to elevate their services in the Indian Payment service market. This would be the first time WhatsApp introduces a payments service and could tie in with the company’s plans to invite businesses on the platform to chat with customers. The reports are also that, WhatsApp is in talks with the government to add support for UPI (Unified Payment Interface)
On his visit to India in February, Brain Acton Co-Founder of WhatsApp said, “India is an important country for WhatsApp, and we understand how we can contribute more to the vision of Digital India. We’re exploring how we might work with companies that share this vision and continuing to listen closely to feedback from our users.”
Other applications like which have adopted users-to-user payment services are TrueCaller which have tied up with ICICI bank in order to utilise UPI. Hike messenger, which is made in India have also started offering payment services.
Even after 6 months of Demonetization, the entire nation is still left to stand in long queues in front of banks and ATMs. Even after the existence of e-wallets like Paytm, Freecharge etc people in India are still facing problems to get cash. With its immense popularity, let us hope WhatsApp will help their Indian users to face lesser issues regarding the payments which are going on in the country.