Facebook banks on Messenger peer-to-peer payments success

Posted November 08, 2017

Transfers through Facebook Messenger will work in the United Kingdom as they do in the US.

Facebook doesn't now charge a transaction fee for Messenger payments, but integrating a mobile pay feature on its core site could open the door for collecting one as an added revenue stream.

Facebook has also launched M suggestions for payments into the Messenger app, which uses artificially intelligent virtual assistant M to identify when payment is being discussed in a conversation and present options to send or receive money.

What is this glorious new feature we hear you say?

"In the USA most people use payments in Messenger to send less than $50 at a time", David Marcus, head of Messenger, said in a statement, adding that the feature is most commonly used during social occasions. Transfer sums are limited to £2,500 at a time and there's a rolling 30-day limit of £10,000 in place.

Here's how you can send a payment via Facebook Messenger.

You'll then be prompted to set up your payment account - this will only happen the first time you use Messenger payments - and enter the amount you want to transfer.

Have you ever gone somewhere with a friend and been in the position of forgetting your wallet, leaving your friend to pay for your coffee, drink, meal, or whatever? It may take one to three business days to make the money available depending on the person's bank, just as it does with other deposits. Users will need to link a debit card to their account before sending or receiving money.

Facebook will take the hit of a small fee issued by the card companies for each transaction processed but believes this to be a price worth paying in order to improve the utility of their service.

Other firms in the USA market include Square, which lets users swap money via its "Cash" app, and Paypal, which acquired payment service Venmo.