Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg has confirmed that its WhatsApp Pay will be launched in several countries in the next six months. The WhatsApp Pay service will also be available in India soon. The company was supposed to launch WhatsApp Pay in India back in 2019, but data compliance issues and regulations have kept launch in abeyance for quite some time.
WhatsApp was facing the issues despite a successful test run of the payments service with one million users in India in 2018. “We got approval to test this with one million people in India back in 2018. And when so many of the people kept using it week after week, we knew it was going to be big when we get to launch,” Zuckerberg said during the company’s earnings call on Thursday.
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“I’m really excited about this, and I expect this to start rolling out in a number of countries and for us to make a lot of progress here in the next six months,” he added. Beyond WhatsApp Payments, the company is working on several other efforts to help facilitate more commerce from Facebook Marketplace to Instagram Shopping and its work on Facebook Pay or the digital currency Libra.
“We’re taking a number of different approaches here, ranging from people buying and selling to each other directly to businesses setting up storefronts, to people engaging with businesses directly through messaging and a number of things on payments ranging from existing — using existing national systems like India’s UPI to creating new global systems,” said the Facebook CEO, hailing the UPI system again.
The UPI-based WhatsApp Pay service will reach over 400 million users — especially the small and medium businesses (SMBs). The service will help boost digital inclusion in the country. “Having small businesses succeed is not the only key to creating broad economic growth where everyone can support themselves. It’s also important to maintain healthy communities since small businesses are often where people come together,” said Zuckerberg.
– With inputs from IANS