Whatsapp has finally secured the necessary approval to roll out Whatsapp Pay in India. The payment service had initially been rolled out to about one million users in the country for testing purposes.
The National Payments corporation of India (NPCI), said that it had granted Whatsapp approval to roll out UPI-powered payments in India. Whatsapp Pay follows the likes of Google, Samsung and a number of firms using UPI, a payment infrastructure built by a coalition of banks in India.
NPCI said it had granted Whatsapp approval to expand the payment service in a “graded manner”. To start with, the service is expected to be rolled out to 20 million users and work with multiple banking partners.
TechCrunch published a report in June, placing Google Pay at the top in payment apps in India with 75 million users, followed by Walmart-owned PhonePe. Both apps rely on Unified Payments Interface (UPI); which is the same protocol that WhatsApp pay operates on.
WhatsApp India’s head, Abhijit Bose, earlier said that its new payment system could bring in at least 200 million more customers to UPI.
Whatsapp announced the news to its users through a tweet saying
“Starting today, people across India will be able to send money Through Whatsapp. This secure payments experience makes transferring money just as easy as sending a message.”
WhatsApp Pay launched its services in Brazil in June only to be shut down a week later following non-compliance and failure to integrate well into the country’s financial system.
The services were suspended pending the development of a clear road map that will see the payment system work in tandem with Brazil’s financial players.