TECH TALK

WhatsApp innovation key in money transactions

You can send money through WhatsApp

In Summary

•WhatsApp Pay is an in-chat payment feature that allows users to make transactions via WhatsApp to their contact list.

The WhatsApp logo. /COURTESY
The WhatsApp logo. /COURTESY

We all know WhatsApp as a communication app only for sending messages and sharing funny videos but the company has added a new feature to it known as WhatsApp Pay.

WhatsApp Pay is an in-chat payment feature that allows users to make transactions via WhatsApp to their contact list.

It is a UPI (Unified Payments Interface)-based payment service that allows you to both send and receive money.

It was launched in India in 2018 as part of a trial run. Payments through this service was introduced to a million users under a partnership with ICICI (Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India) bank and the NPCI (National Payments Corporation of India) approved to roll out its digital payment service in a phased manner this year in February.

You can send money through WhatsApp straight from the chat screen. You have to tap on the Attachment icon and select the payments option. It requires the receiver to enable the WhatsApp payments as well.

You can also send money to a UPI ID or Scan QR Code as is the case with other UPI apps. It is easy to use as you will start by opening your friend’s chat screen and tap on the Attachment icon. You will then tap on Payments and follow the on-screen steps.

Once this is set up, you can now send money from the chat screen and for this to work your contact on the other end should have set up the WhatsApp Payments.

Users can check their transaction history and account details in that section. The Payment system works on the UPI method, where the funds transfer can be initiated without having to provide bank account numbers and IFSC codes of recipients.

Using this mode of payment will bring with it benefits. One of the benefits is that users will easily transfer payments across accounts and this feature will come in handy during these times. The users will not have to go to banks just to withdraw or deposit cash.

Another advantage is that it will reduce the users from physically touching cash where studies show that hands are heavy carriers of germs. At this time handling cash is not the most ideal. Some users have gone to the lengths of disinfecting the money that they receive which can be tedious.

Having a payment system on WhatsApp is another advantage for small merchants. For them having an online payment system opens up opportunities for them to fulfill orders. It will also open up more exposure for their store and products with a store setup within WhatsApp.

With such form of payment service on WhatsApp, it will help in observing hygiene which is the sole reason for having this. On the other hand, it does not rule out cases of fraud which I find should be addressed within the service and developers.