Facebook owned and globally popular messaging platform WhatsApp has announced its long anticipated payments feature – with Brazil as its maiden market. The feature will be free for consumers, with businesses paying a 3.995 processing fee to receive payments via the platform. The feature will allow consumers to send/receive money via within the messaging app, and, critical to its success in more mature payments markets, be linked to a consumer’s credit or debit card – allowing the user to circumvent facebook’s own wallet feature, which is not widely used in more developed markets. We expect that if this proves a success, WhatsApp will scale this initiative to other markets and leverage on the current wave of open banking that is taking over the world. As for the actual technology behind the transaction, payments processing will be provided by a third party, operating in partnership with WhatsApp.
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