Facebook Messenger stands out due to its expanded functions including payments
Despite the loud scandals around Facebook and its data security, the network still remains the most powerful media in the world with almost 2.5 billion monthly active users as of the fourth quarter of 2019.
Around 2.9 billion people have been using at least one of the company’s core products (Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram, or Messenger) each month as registered during the same period.
With the abundance of various messenger chats, Facebook Messenger stands out due to its expanded functions including the P2P transactions.
Sending and receiving money
You can use both a desktop and a mobile version of Facebook Messenger to make and accept payments. Payments are processed free of charge for both sender and receiver.
To be able to use Messenger payments for the first time, you need to provide funding information. You should add a Visa or MasterCard debit card to your account or use your PayPal details. It can be done in the “Settings” menu or directly in a Messenger chat. Once you add a payment method, you can turn on additional layers of security.
Start a conversation with people you want to pay. Tap or click $ and specify the amount to send. Hit “Next” to initiate the payment. Make sure to pay only to trusted users. If you get involved with a scammer, Facebook doesn’t bear any responsibility.
If somebody sends you money via Messenger, you get a notification. If you receive money for the first time, you should add your account details. Use the “Add card” icon or Facebook settings. All later transactions will use the initial settings. You can change or update the payment method when needed.
The money you send is transferred right away. However, it may take one to three business days to make the money available to the recipient depending on their bank routines.
The feature works the same in group chats as in private ones, allowing users to pay either everyone in the group or individual members through a click of the payments icon (the $ sign).
In addition to sending payments to other group members, you can request payments from the group right within your chat. If you split costs for a purchase or service, create a chat with all those concerned.
Enter the amount you want to request per person or the total sum to be divided evenly. You can also add a note clarifying what the money is for. Then hit “Request” to send a message to the group conversation.
An automatic message will appear in the group chat when a member has paid their share.
Initially, the company had ambitious plans about Messenger payments. The service started in the US and was further rolled out in Europe.
However, last year Facebook announced that it would be discontinuing the service in both countries in the region where it had rolled it out, the U.K. and France. The total number of transactions carried out in Europe was insufficient to expand the scope of the offered services. Moreover, possibly the company has realized that executing payments requires deep integration with local financial institutions which Facebook doesn’t have. P2P transactions remain active in the U.S., where Facebook holds a number of money transmitter licenses.
In November 2019, the social company introduced Facebook Pay instead.
Although P2P transactions are available only in the USA, other customers can still make payments with the platform including paying for ads, making donations, shopping online, etc.
Facebook Pay allows you to choose a preferred payment method once instead of having to re-enter your payment information each time. Optionally, you can set it up for use across apps (where available).
The service works in the US for fundraisers, in-game purchases, event tickets, person-to-person payments on Messenger and purchases from select Pages and businesses on Facebook Marketplace with a real-time customer support via live chat.
Facebook Pay will continue to roll out to other apps and countries over time.
Separate e-wallets will be used for crypto transactions.