WhatsApp gets approval to offer payments service to 40 million users in India

WhatsApp Pay, the messaging app’s payment feature, will soon be available to 40 million users in India. As per Reuters report, the messaging app has got approval from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to expand its WhatsApp Pay payments service to 40 million users in India.
If you don’t know already, WhatsApp Pay is a payment feature available within the app. It is based on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform.

The report reveals that WhatsApp Pay is currently available to only 20 million users in India. Now that the messaging app has got the nod from NPCI, the user base will get doubled. WhatsApp on the other hand had requested the government to remove the cap on users of its payment service in India. However, instead of removing the cap entirely, NPCI has given permission to expand the services to 40 million users instead of just 20 million.

As per sources, WhatsApp isn’t too convinced with the expansion of the feature to 40 million users because the app has over 500 million users in India. It believes that restricting WhatsApp Pay to only a handful of users would hinder the company’s growth prospects. It has not been revealed yet when the new cap would come into effect.

It took WhatsApp years to get approval from NPCI to start its payments services in India. The company spent years trying to abide by the Indian regulations and data storage norms. When the feature was finally rolled out last year, it wasn’t immediately made available to all the WhatsApp users. The NPCI allowed phased rollouts in which only 20 million users got to use WhatsApp Pay. Now that the feature has been expanded, 40 million users will be able to make payments using the app. It is however unclear when the feature would be rolled out to the other 20 minion users.

When WhatsApp came up with its payments feature, it had the idea to take on Google Pay, Paytm and other popular payments app considering WhatsApp has the largest user base in India. But things didn’t happen as planned and the NPCI cap was responsible for the feature not reaching as many people as WhatsApp want it to.

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