Whatsapp now includes a payment option in its service


Bob Coiney

December 10, 2021

Meta, formerly known as Facebook, has undergone several changes since the year began. The company, which also owns social media apps Instagram and Whatsapp, has made moves to include cryptocurrency into their services as they are set to be a key player in the new metaverse.

In a recent report,  Whatsapp users in the United States can now transfer and accept funds using the Novi wallet, thanks to the expansion of a trial program for the crypto payment service developed by Meta.

Novi’s CEO, Stephane Kasriel, claimed late Wednesday on Twitter that just a small number of individuals on WhatsApp had access to exchanging money digitally with Novi. Novi, Kasriel claimed, makes sending money to family and friends as simple as sending a text message. Novi’s website also included a notification regarding the extended US tests.

Novi, a separate software similar to WhatsApp, is developed to send and receive money internationally and instantaneously with no costs. Payments are made in Pax Dollars, or USDP, a stablecoin launched in 2018 with a fixed value to the US dollar and completely backed reserves of cash and currency equivalents.

How to use Novi on WhatsApp

Simply follow these instructions to begin using Novi on WhatsApp:

Open the chat with the person you’d like to give money to on WhatsApp.

On your iPhone, press the Plus button.

In the menu, choose Payment.

To log in or create a new Novi account, follow the on-screen instructions.

Begin receiving and sending money.

A few months ago, then-Facebook started a “limited” test program for Novi in Guatemala and some regions of the United States, claiming that the service might help reach a section of the world’s 1.7 billion adults without access to a bank account. Novi is also partnering with cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase to provide custody services for its customers’ assets.

In October, a group of Democratic senators called on Mark Zuckerberg, the creator, and CEO of Facebook, to halt the launch of Novi, claiming that the firm could not be trusted to run a payment system or digital currency.

Meta to Continue its Expansion

Novi, according to Facebook, is just getting started. To begin with, it is only available as a pilot for a select group of users in Guatemala and the United States except for Alaska, Nevada, New York, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Second, Facebook and the Diem Association have not ruled out the possibility of launching their own cryptocurrency in the future.

In a post on Twitter, Novi project lead David Marcus said, “I do want to be clear that our support for Diem hasn’t changed and we intend to launch Novi with Diem once it receives regulatory approval and goes live. We care about interoperability and we want to do it right.” 

In June of this year, Facebook announced the Libra cryptocurrency. Since then, the crypto industry has altered dramatically. Some stablecoins, in particular, have grown in popularity to the point where Tether and USD Coins currently have a combined circulating supply of more than $100 billion.