Of all the mobile payment systems out there, we weren’t expecting one from Snapchat. Known for its destructive messaging service, the new Snapcash feature will now let you send money to your friends.
Chances are you’re already aware of at least one of the multiple ways to send money to friends and acquaintances using your phone. Most banks and building societies offer mobile payment apps and services like PayPal have mobile solutions too. Now Snapchat wants in on the action and it’s adding a little bit of humour to the payment experience, which its dubbed Snapcash.
Unlike other new mobile payment services, Snapcash will be able to draw on a sizeable portion of Snapchat’s existing 100 million-strong active monthly user base, which could help kickstart the service into life.
Based on the announcement video the company’s just released, it would appear that sending money via the app simply requires that you enter into a chat with the friend you wish to send dough to. In the chat window, just write the desired amount you want to send (preceded by the ‘$’ sign) and then you can virtually ‘make it rain’ on your mate by three-finger swiping off singles to the recipient. Your lucky pal will then receive your kindly relinquished funds in the form of little dollar bills floating down their phone’s display.
Over the past year, Snapchat has been in the news on a number of occasions regarding user privacy and security issues, which doesn’t fill us with confidence over a new service that grants access to users’ hard-earned money.
That said, credibility comes in the form of the payment end actually being handled by Square, who already has an existing mobile payment service under its own banner (Square Cash). Users will input debit card information through Snapchat, presumably following an update that includes the Snapcash feature, but all those details will be securely stored with Square.
At this point in time it appears that Snapcash won’t be available to any Snapchat users outside of the US. Some might tut at having to wait for the feature to reach their neck of the woods, but in our opinion we’d rather see where the holes are (if any) and whether US users feel like the concept has legs.