- WhatsApp will allow cryptocurrency payments
- The pilot will feature USDP or Pax Dollars
- “Limited users” in the U.S. will be able to use the feature
Meta’s (previously Facebook) WhatsApp is ready to enter the world of crypto payments, allowing users to send cryptocurrencies the same way they send messages. The pilot of this new payment feature will only be available to a “limited number” of users initially before a full rollout.
As described by Stephane Kasriel, the incoming head of the Novi Wallet, in a tweet, the new feature is powered by the Novi Wallet, which was launched six months ago in the United States and Guatemala.
Will Cathcart, the head of Meta’s WhatsApp, also announced the new development in a tweet, saying: “People use WA to coordinate sending money to loved ones, and now Novi will help them do that securely, instantly, and with no fees.”
Furthermore, WhatsApp won’t change the privacy features of the application as chats and related details are instantly end-to-end encrypted in the application.
“Meta Platforms, formerly Facebook, has been working on the wallet app for several months while scaling back its global plans for rolling out a digital currency called Diem on regulatory concerns,” claims Reuters.
The payments will be made using USDP or Pax dollars for now, as per a report from The Verge, which is a “stablecoin pegged to the US dollar issued by Paxos.”
A user can send crypto to any person in his or her WhatsApp contact list just like they send attachments. One can easily tap the ‘+’ icon on iOS or the ‘clip’ icon on the Android version of the application tap “Payment” to select and send the amount they want. There is no limit on the number or amount of transactions that one can initiate.
Furthermore, no fee is required to withdraw the crypto into the bank account or to store it in the Novi account. The Novi Wallet was available for the U.S. and Guatemala, as previously mentioned. But it seems that the users in Guatemala won’t be able to use this feature for now, as per WhatsAppBetaInfo. Although, they can use their wallets to complete payments.
Meta’s efforts to enter the crypto payments industry are well known. The firm announced plans to launch a cryptocurrency by the name of Libra in 2019, which failed due to regulatory pressure. However, the project has now turned into Diem, which was originally planned to be launched with Novi Wallet. The Diem crypto is yet to be launched.