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Facebook begins beta testing for independent payment product on Messenger

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Competition for digital payment majors such as Paytm, MobiKwik, and PhonePe are going to intensify as after WhatsApp, Facebook is currently staging beta test for its own payment product in India. Notably, the Mark Zuckerberg-led company’s payment product is an independent play and will compete with WhatsApp UPI.

Facebook has launched a beta version of messenger where select users can recharge mobile phones and other prepaid services including DTH and broadband amongst others. Citing sources, FactorDaily reports that it will offer peer-to-peer and peer-to-merchant payments.

Lately, Facebook also had launched C2C Marketplace majorly for used goods in India in November last year. It will integrate the payment product with ‘Marketplace’. Importantly, Facebook also introduced a feature that enables merchants to showcase their offerings and entice customers to transact through messenger.

Also Read: Exclusive: Facebook launches ‘Marketplace’ to buy and sell used goods and services in India

With its standalone payment product, the social networking giant is eyeing to create a complete ecosystem through Messenger, Marketplace, Facebook, and payment.

Last December, Facebook had hired former Visa senior executive Sunali Rohra to head its payment play for Indian and SEA region mentions the report. The California-based company has a user base of about 250 million in India. The huge user base in the country gives it an advantage over others to experiment with an array of products and features.

Meanwhile, Facebook-owned instant messenger platform WhatsApp UPI payment is currently under beta testing and soon to be opened for its 250 million user base. It’s expected to disrupt the UPI-powered payment ecosystem when it would get open for all.

Of late, WhatsApp has been facing flak from homegrown digital payments players, especially Paytm. Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Founder & CEO, Paytm, has targeted WhatsApp for circumventing regulations to launch WhatsApp UPI.

Currently, digital payment in India is on rising as several global and local behemoths are competing to grab a larger slice of it. Besides WhatsApp, Google Tez, Paytm, PhonePe and Freecharge are the major players in UPI ecosystem.

With Facebook getting into payment, space would heat up with more competition.

Apart from e-commerce, digital payment space has turned out to be a fledgling battleground for global and local companies including Google and Facebook. The digital payment space which is in nascent stage would indeed be an exciting one to watch out for.

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