WhatsApp has been developing the ‘payments’ feature for quite some time now. In January we heard that the company will be rolling out the feature to users from February and since we are in February now, the Payment option is enabled to select WhatsApp beta users on Android and iOS.
The version number with the Payments option differs for both Android and iOS. For iOS users, WhatsApp with version number V2.18.21 has the Payment option enabled, while it is only available to selected users on Android running version V2.18.41. Everyone might not see the Payments option since it seems to be a server-side roll out.
WhatsApp Payments will be through UPI (Unified Payments Interface) and once you tap the Attachments menu inside a chat you will see new Payment option along with gallery, video, documents and once you click it, you will be displayed with the list of banks and once you select your bank, you will see the account that is linked. After selecting the account, you will be needing to verify it like any other UPI based payment service. If you haven’t used UPI payments before, you will be asked to create one along with security pin for authentication.
Another interesting thing about WhatsApp UPI based payments service that we found is that both the sender and receiver need to have the WhatsApp Payment option enabled for a transaction to be made. We have tried to link the bank account on Android but weren’t successful as I was on iOS, meaning that the Payments feature might be in final stages of development.
With WhatsApp implementing the Payments feature it would be so easy for the transaction and should give a big boost to digital UPI based payments in India. WhatsApp got the approval to integrate UPI in July 2017. We will be testing the Payments feature, and once it gets enabled and rolls for everyone, we will let you know.