Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is testing out a feature that will allow users to make payments through Messenger. The company had revealed some time back that it plans to launch a payment service through the Messenger app.
The company is now testing out the payment feature, thus confirming Facebook’s plans that it announced a few months ago. The feature which is known as Send or Request Money will allow users to send funds or make payments to their peers. The feature will initially be available in the US, but it is expected to be rolled out in other regions in the future. The feature was launched a week ago and is already available in the US and users who have updated their app within the region should access the feature in the Messenger menu.
Facebook plans to make the feature as appealing as possible to the many Messenger users. This is because the feature works by simply adding card details including cards from Mastercard Inc (NYSE:MA) and Visa Inc (NYSE:V). Additionally, users will not incur any extra costs because the company does not charge any payment fee. This means the Messenger payment option will become a threat to online payment firms such as Paypal Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:PYPL).
Messenger has a wide user base which is just shy of 1 billion people, but Facebook believes its latest efforts for expanding the Messenger platform will encourage more users to get on board. The large user base is an advantage for the firm because it has already secured its users and the only thing left is to get the payment service off the ground and give it a global presence. It also comes in the wake of the growing mobile payment industry. Messenger’s payment service also spells danger for the other mobile services in the market such as Apple Pay from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung Pay among others. Facebook’s plan is not to become an online payment service provider but to make Messenger more appealing to users and in turn foster more activity.