The recently launched UPI payments feature on WhatsApp is now active across India in partnership with State Bank of India (SBI), ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, and Axis Bank, announced Abhijit Bose, chief executive, WhatsApp India on day two of Facebook’s Fuel for India 2020 virtual event.
“Our aim was to make sending money to family and friends as easy and as secure as sending a message or attaching a photo. I am delighted to share with you that WhatsApp Pay is now live across the country through our bank partners State Bank of India, ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis bank,” Bose said.
WhatsApp Pay was rolled out in November, but was not available to all. It was one of the reasons why only over 3 lakh UPI transactions, as per NPCI, were carried out on it during the month.
Bose said people who are new to digital payments need a simple, secure and trusted way to get on board and complete the last and important leg of any transaction. WhatsApp Pay can be that bridge for many of our users. “I’m really excited about the prospects of WhatsApp Pay,” he added.
Improving customer experience of engaging with businesses on WhatsApp will be the key focus area for the company as it hopes to rope more businesses on its business app.
The company will continue to invest in the business API (application programming interface), offering features and flexibility for the ecosystem in India to build highly customised customer experiences. “We want to make it easier for consumers to connect with and buy from their favourite businesses both large and small over our platform,” said Bose.
Early this month, WhatsApp added a shopping cart feature for businesses. It will let customers add multiple items to their cart and send them all as a single order in a message. Features such as this “will help these small business owners grow their businesses,” added Bose.
Facebook-owned WhatsApp will continue to bring new features and tools to the WhatsApp Business app, designed especially to help small businesses and kirana stores grow and scale.
Bose highlighted that the company will continue to deepen investments in India by developing and scaling social impact programs, in the aftermath of covid-19. “WhatsApp has proactively been working on several pilots to help ensure that every adult has access to the most basic critical financial and livelihood services through their mobile device. By the end of this year, we expect that people will be able to buy affordable sachet sized health insurance through WhatsApp” said Bose.
WhatsApp has over 400 million active users while the business app has 15 million users in the country.
This article was first published on livemint.com