"Our research shows the top reasons for sending money include celebrations, social, and festive occasions; it's those everyday moments we're trying to make a little easier - we've seen that in the USA most people use payments in Messenger to send less than $50 at a time", said David Marcus, head of Messenger at Facebook.
What is Facebook Messenger payments? It's the first time Facebook has launched the feature outside of the US. It essentially allows you to send and receive money from Facebook friends - all via Messenger, and without having to exit a conversation thread.
Since Google recently launched its wallet application, Tez, in India and considering the digitasation emphasis of the Indian government, we won't be surprised if Facebook brings the service to Indian shores too.
"Our research shows the top reasons for sending money include celebrations, social and festive occasions", said head of Messenger David Marcus. This apparently due to the fact that United Kingdom banks decided against a centralised Paym app, with users of the technology required to log into the apps of their own respective banks to use the service. Users will need to link a debit card to their account before sending or receiving money.
Payments in Messenger are fast, free and secure.
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Note: If the friend hasn't set the system up, they'll be asked to enter their card details to get the payment.
Of course, Facebook may not be trying to build a global payments network out of just three countries, but the P-to-P endeavor highlights the disconnect between Facebook's social network and its money network.
That said, most of these issues can be overcome by Facebook's sheer scale. And there are certain complexities to cross-border payments that Facebook is wise not to confront right away.
It's already available in the US.