Paytm to Start Messaging Service by August End to Rival WhatsApp: Report

The digital payments platform Paytm is allegedly looking into possibly launching its own messaging service by the end of August. According to a new report from Wall Street Journal, this move comes as an attempt to take on its rival, WhatsApp, which has been working on introducing payments feature within the app for the past few months.

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The Paytm chat application will supposedly offer its digital payment service inside the app that lets its users buy “everything from food to plane tickets”, and SoftBank and Alibaba have backed the firm in introducing this feature. For those unaware, WeChat already offers the option of digital transactions on its chat platform and is quite popular in China.

Coming back to WhatsApp’s plan to integrate payments on its platform, the company is reportedly working on introducing person-to-person payment option in India within the next six months. The report also added that the Paytm’s messaging platform would allow users to send audio, video, texts, and pictures along with accessing their payments service.

Having said all that, it has to be noted that this is just reported information and the company is yet to acknowledge this development officially. Paytm has over 225 million active monthly users in India.

The company had recently introduced its own payments bank, the Paytm Payments Bank, which offers zero charges on online transactions, no minimum balance requirement, and a free virtual debit card. The bank also offers 4 percent of annual interest for all savings account.

In other news, another homegrown messaging platform Hike also rolled out the digital payments feature in the app to cash in on the rising digital transaction trend in India.

E-payments in the country surged after the government banned old high-value currency notes late last year in the name of demonetization. It is estimated that digital payments in India will magnify times 10 by 2020 to $500 billion.

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