WhatsApp has been working on its own payments system for the past few years, which has been in the beta phase in India for more than two years now. Now, the company has launched the payments service in Brazil.
With this launch, Brazil has become the first market to officially get the payments feature to send and receive money through WhatsApp. The system is using Facebook Pay which makes sense given that WhatsApp is owned by Facebook.
The company says that the payment service is currently free for consumers, which means that the platform isn’t charging any commission fees. However, businesses will have to pay about a 3.99 percent processing fee to receive payments.
To use the service, users can link the WhatsApp account with the Visa or MasterCard — either credit card or debit card. The company has also partnered with Banco do Brasil, Nubank, and Sicredi.
The news comes as a surprise given that WhatsApp has been testing its payment service in India since 2018. Everyone expected India to be the first country to get support for the payments system in WhatsApp.
It seems that Facebook is finally moving ahead with the payments service with rolling out the feature in other regions as the company is yet to secure a license in India. The beta test in India is based on UPI and not Facebook Pay.
Because of the regulatory hassles, WhastApp cannot expand its payments service from the beta phase which is also restricted to a limited set of users. India is one of the biggest markets for WhatsApp, having 400 million monthly active users and Brazil is the second-largest market with 120 million MAUs. In total, the messaging service has over 2 billion users worldwide.