Since the demonetisation of older notes, the Indian P2P payments market has been booming and if reports are correct, WhatsApp will be joining in soon. According to a report in Ken, the popular chat application is likely to introduce an integrated payment platform in as soon as six months. The report suggests that the payment system will be backed by UPI, which is the cross-bank payment system set in place by the Indian government and is backed by a majority of public and private sector banks.
A WhatsApp spokesperson told us, "India is an important country for WhatsApp, and we're understanding how we can contribute more to the vision of Digital India. We're exploring how we might work with companies that share this vision and continuing to listen closely to feedback from our users." While this neither confirms nor refutes the report, WhatsApp does seem to be bullish about the idea. This, in turn, does not completely rule out the possibility of a P2P payment service integrated into the messaging service.
Currently, WhatsApp has about 200 million monthly active users in India, and integrating a P2P payment system into the chat service will see it compete directly with Paytm, which recently crossed 200 million wallet users. Other applications like Truecaller and Samsung's own Samsung Pay have joined the lucrative P2P payments fray, which has also seen the introduction of UPI since demonetisation of old currency notes in November 2016.