WhatsApp Pay comes out of beta — after two years and the various obstacles, WhatsApp Pay has finally arrived in India.
WhatsApp Pay has been available for about two years for over one million users, within an initial test phase in India. However, the payments system was launched in beta during 2018, and in the course of its activity, it has faced several regulatory obstacles to obtain approval for the final launch.
Starting today, users located in India will be able to send money to other users through the WhatsApp Messenger.
WhatsApp Pay is based on UPI ( Unified Payment Interface ), a standard defined by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). The company uses the same methods as other existing apps such as Google Pay and PhonePe, with WhatsApp Pay working with five different banks in the country at launch, including ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, the State Bank of India, and Jio Payments. Bank. Using WhatsApp, users can send money to anyone who uses a UPI compatible app.
The CEO of Facebook, WhatsApp’s parent company, Mark Zuckerberg, spoke about the news: “With the UPI standard, India has created something truly special and is opening up a world of opportunities for micro and small businesses that are the backbone of Indian economy. India is the first country to do something similar and I am delighted that we have been able to support this commitment and work together to help achieve a more digital India.”
Although the feature is about to be extended with the launch of the general roll-out in India, the NPCI imposed a limit of 20 million WhatsApp Pay enabled users at launch. The reason is simple — to avoid the emergence of a monopoly in the digital payment system in the country, given that with its 400 million active users in India WhatsApp could dominate the market. According to the NPCI, WhatsApp Pay will be able to grow gradually, with the limit that will be extended over time.
According to the new directives of the NPCI, no third-party app, therefore not even Google Pay, will be able to process more than 30% of the volume of monthly transactions via UPI in India. Previously, the market was dominated by Google Pay and PhonePe, which in October alone processed 1.6 billion transactions out of the 2 billion that occurred through the payment standard.