WhatsApp Payments with UPI support has been spotted on Android and iOS beta versions of the app, according to reports. GizmoTimes reported about the WhatsApp UPI-based payments, while another report on FoneArena highlights the versions where the feature appears to be live. It also looks like the UPI-based payment feature has been rolled out to select WhatsApp users for now. We were unable to spot the feature on the beta version of WhatsApp on our Android phones.
According to reports, iOS beta version v2.18.21 has the UPI-based payment option, while WhatsApp Android running version v2.18.41 has this option reflecting for some users. The option for UPI-based payments shows up in the attachments segment next to Documents, Gallery, Audio, Location, Contact, etc. Based on the screenshots share it looks like once a user taps on Payment, the app will show a list of supported banks. UPI, which stands for Unified Payments Interface, relies on direct transfers from the bank. A user needs to input their account details, UPI pin for authorising every transaction on the platform.
The GizmoTimes report also adds they were unable to add the bank account to the WhatsApp account for carrying out any transaction. The reason could be that the feature is not yet full supported and WhatsApp is still completing the integration. WhatsApp has been working on UPI payments since last year as it was reported by many publications.
Google in India already has a UPI-based payments application called Google Tez, which has proved be a success for the company. WhatsApp though could enjoy greater success given its considerably large user base in India and popularity in the market. WhatsApp has over 200 million users in India alone, and is the leading messaging app in the country.
WhatsApp and Facebook are both working towards UPI-based integration. Facebook, which owns WhatsApp, is expected to bring this feature to its Messenger app. WhatsApp has already gone live with a Business app in India which is aimed at SMEs in the market. A payments feature within the regular version of the app could also add a new use case for small businesses, enterprises which decide to use the WhatsApp Business app to connect with customers.