Snapcash aims to socialise your bank balance
Snapchat and Square have teamed up to bring mobile payments to Snapchat users through a new initiative they’re dubbing as ‘Snapcash’. This new feature allows for Square payments to be launched inside the Snapchat app and means that users can send friends money by simply typing out the amount they wish to transfer and hitting the send button.
The strange social messaging phenomenon that sees users sending self-destructing images, videos, and text certainly seems like an odd place to bring payments to. However, Snapchat’s userbase is sizable – over 100 million – and is continually growing, and they’re still yet to find a way to really monetise them and capitalise on the data they hold. So, having this form of frictionless payment embedded inside the Snapchat app could really help turn tables.
But why is Snapcash so important? Well, while products like Venmo, PayPal and Square all require users to stay inside their existing payment ecosystems – for instance you can’t send someone on Venmo a payment from PayPal – Snapcash really doesn’t care who you do your general payments transactions with.
In fact, all Snapcash wants to know is your bank details so you can receive the funds sent to you by your friends.
While this is certainly an indication of where the future of mobile money is going, it may not become a reality for a while yet as Snapchat isn’t really associated with the likes of safety, security or sensible actions.
However, this might mean that Facebook feels the need to announce its payment service – which was unveiled by a hacker poking around in Messenger - a little sooner. By doing that, perhaps the mobile payments market will be shaken up for real, what with Facebook’s 500 million monthly active users on the Messenger app.
Whatever the outcome of Snapcash, it’s proof that the need for multiple payment apps to send money to your friends could soon be a remnant of the past.
You can watch the absurdly strange launch video for Snapcash below, if the urge so takes you.