Providing Safe way to send money to a family or share the cost of goods from a distance without having to exchange cash
WhatsApp on Friday said it is rolling out its payment services in India after receiving a nod from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).
In 2018, the Facebook-owned company WhatsApp had started testing its UPI-based (Unified Payments Interface) payments service in India, which allows users to utilize the messaging platform to send and receive money.
On Thursday, NPCI - which runs the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) used for real-time payments between peers or at merchants' end while making purchases - allowed WhatsApp to start its payments service in the country in a "graded" manner, starting with a maximum registered user base of 20 million in UPI.
"Starting today, people across India will be able to send money via WhatsApp. This secure payment experience makes transferring money just as easy as sending a message. People can safely send money to a family member or share the cost of goods from a distance without having to exchange cash in person or going to a local bank.
The payment feature is now available for iPhone and Android users who are on the latest version of the app and will be available in 10 Indian language versions of WhatsApp.
In June this year, WhatsApp had launched 'WhatsApp Pay' in Brazil - making it the first country where the service was widely rolled out.
In India, WhatsApp - which counts India as its biggest market with over 400 million users - will compete with Paytm, Google Pay, Walmart-owned PhonePe, and Amazon Pay.
WhatsApp said it is working with five banks in India - ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, the State Bank of India, and Jio Payments Bank - and people can send money on WhatsApp to anyone using a UPI supported app.
WhatsApp noted that its payments service is designed with a strong set of security and privacy principles, including entering a personal UPI PIN for each payment.
"There is no fee... because it's WhatsApp, you know it's secure and private too. With UPI, India has created something truly special and is opening up a world of opportunities for micro and small businesses that's the backbone of the Indian economy," Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a video message.
UPI processed over 2.07 billion transactions in October (worth Rs 3.86 lakh crore), up from over 1.8 billion in the previous month, as per data from NPCI.
How to create your account
Step 1: Open the WhatsApp app on your phone and tap on the three-dotted icon, which is placed on the top right corner of the screen.
Step 2: Tap on Payments > Add payment method. You will get a list of bank names.
Step 3: After selecting the name of the bank, your number (linked with the bank) will be verified. For this, you need to tap on Verify via SMS. Make sure the WhatsApp number is the same as the one linked to your bank account.
Step 4: Once the verification process is completed, you can then need to finish setting up payments. You will need to set a UPI pin for carrying out transactions similar to how it is on other apps. After this, you will be able to see the chosen bank on the payments page.
How to send or receive money
Step 1: Open the chat of the person on WhatsApp and go to attachment icon.
Step 2: Tap on Payment and add the amount you want to send to the individual. One can also add a note.
Step 3: To complete the WhatsApp payment process, you need to enter your UPI PIN. once the transaction is completed, you will get a confirmation message.