The payment feature on WhatsApp is likely to become a reality soon in partnership with banks like State Bank of India, ICICI bank among others.
According to a report in The Economic Times, WhatsApp payments feature could go live in February’s first half.
At present, WhatsApp has a customers base of around 200 million users, due to which experts believe that if the payment feature will go live, that will be the much needed puch to the digital transactions in the country.
According to the newspaper, WhatsApp is in initial talks with integrating its unified payments interface (UPI) platform with popular Indian banks such as the State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis bank.
The payments feature is being tested and will have to undergo a lot of security clearances before it is rolled out to the public.
The payments feature is being tested and will have to undergo a lot of security clearances before it is rolled out to the public. According to a banker, WhatsApp is at various stages of system integration with the banks. The platform is currently being tested on beta stage with one of the partner banks. According to one source, depending on the how the trials play out, the feature should be released to consumers by the end of February.
There are some challenges to the integration such as ensuring various levels of encryptions are maintained to keep the data safe. According to a banker who spoke to ET, UPI also has complicated settlement systems between various banking partners and these issues have to be resolved before going live.
WhatsApp is expected to be the top layer which will identify the sender and receiver on the back end. As its payment platform will be integrated with the banks, WhatsApp will also identify customer accounts and eventually UPI will help with the settling of the transactions.