WhatsApp is working on payments built into the app, according to a site that monitors beta versions of the app.
WABetaInfo, which also has a prominent Twitter account, spotted a beta update to the Android version of the app that contained what appeared to be an early version of a payments system that would enable users to send money over the app.
A screenshot captured by the website showed WhatsApp referring to “immediate bank to bank transfer with UPI” which refers to Unified Payments Interface, a system created in India that enables money to be transferred between two bank accounts via a mobile platform.
WhatsApp has not commented on the feature, but it should be noted that many features are beta tested by tech firms and ultimately never launch to the public.
However, there is a precedent for payments made on a messaging platform in the form of Facebook Messenger, which already enables users in the US to pay friends and family from within the app.
Facebook also owns WhatsApp, and has been known to introduce the same new features across its family of apps.