WhatsApp Payments tipped to go live in India soon

WhatsApp Payments tipped to go live in India soon

Facebook-owned WhatsApp received the official nod from National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) in July 2017 to tie up with multiple banks to initiate the digital wallet feature on its messenger app. It soon kicked off Payments beta-testing in India with more than a million users, but the company was asked to delay the public version launch owing to the government's concern over the data center location.

In 2018, Reserve Bank of India had asked WhatsApp and other third-party e-wallet app companies to shift its data centers that store local users' financial information and transaction data from foreign shores to India. And, the audit has to be done by third-party firms authorised by the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN).

Now, the company has completed the localisation of the data centers and official auditing process has commenced. Later, a report will be submitted to the nodal agency and once accepted, WhatsApp will officially roll-out Payments feature soon, reported The Economic Times citing the company insider.

WhatsApp has already signed an agreement with ICICI bank to offer government-approved Unified Payments Interface (UPI) service and is in talks to forge similar deals with others including HDFC, State Bank of India and Axis Bank.

After the launch, WhatsApp Payments will be competing with Amazon Pay, PayTm, Google Pay and 35 plus third-party digital wallet apps in India.

Calibra app; Picture credit: Facebook

In a related development, Facebook, earlier in the month unveiled Libra cryptocurrency. It is claimed to be more stable than the Bitcoins or Ethereum. Its value will not swing as wildly as the latter two, as Facebook claims that each Libra coin generated will be matched by real-world assets such as bank deposits, government securities in currencies including Dollar, Sterling Pound,  Euro and others from global reputable and stable financial institutions. It is slated to be launched in the first half of 2020.

Read more | Libra: Key facts about Facebook's new cryptocurrency

Facebook also showcased Calibra, a digital wallet for cryptocurrency transaction. It will be available on both the Apple App Store for iOS devices and Google Play for Android mobiles. 

Read more | Calibra: Key facts about Facebook's digital wallet

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