Facebook is bringing peer-to-peer (P2P) payments to the UK through Messenger, enabling people to send cash to their friends and family through the messaging app.
The ability to send money to contacts has existed in the US since 2015, but this marks the first time the feature is being launched outside of the US.
“Our research shows the top reasons for sending money include celebrations, social, and festive occasions; it's those everyday moments we're trying to make a little easier - we've seen that in the US most people use payments in Messenger to send less than $50 at a time,” said David Marcus, head of Messenger at Facebook.
In order to use the feature, users need to head into a chat with a friend and tap on the blue plus button. From here, users set up their payment account – if it’s their first time using the feature – and enter the amount they want to pay. When receiving cash, a card only also needs to be added the first time also.
Payments take between one and three working days to clear into someone’s account, depending on their bank account provider. Facebook doesn’t charge a fee.
The payment feature will also harness the power of Facebook’s virtual assistant ‘M’ to detect when a payment might be relevant to the ongoing conversation.
P2P payments will be rolled out to UK users over time, so some may not access to it for at least a few weeks.
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