WhatsApp's payments service is finally here: How to use it
WhatsApp has launched its payments service in India after receiving a nod from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). The service had debuted as part of a trial two years ago but failed to get a green signal due to regulatory hurdles and antitrust allegations. However, the Facebook-owned company has now been allowed to roll out its payments service in a graded manner.
WhatsApp has designed its payments feature in partnership with NPCI and it is based on Unified Payments Interface (UPI) - India's own real-time digital payment system. The company has partnered with ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank, State Bank of India, and Jio Payments Bank for the service. WhatsApp will initially launch the service with a maximum of 20 million users, as per NPCI.
The payments service on WhatsApp is now available for iOS as well as Android users who are on the latest version of the messaging app. However, since the roll out will happen in a phased manner, not everyone will be able to access the feature.
To set up WhatsApp Pay, go to Settings >Payments >Add payment method. For successful linking, make sure your WhatsApp number and mobile number linked to your bank account are same. Upon selecting your bank, WhatsApp will show you the accounts linked to your mobile number. Select the account, verify the debit card linked to it, and complete the process by creating a UPI PIN.
You can make payments to anyone in your contact list, or to a UPI ID, or by scanning a QR code. To send money to a contact, tap on the 'Attachment' icon in the chat window and then on 'Payment'. Enter the amount and complete the transfer using the UPI PIN. Once the transaction is successful, you should receive an SMS/email from your bank.