Snapchat has launched a new payment feature that allows friends to transfer money to one another. The service, called Snapcash, lets users over the age of 18 send money to contacts using the app’s instant messaging.
The initiative is a partnership with Square and anyone who signs up to the service will have to create a Square Cash account. To start with, the service will only be available on Android in the US but it will undoubtedly expand. I recently blogged about Apple Pay and this is another case of a big name in the technology world venturing into the mobile payments space.
The move is part of Snapchat’s strategy to be more than just an instant photo messaging application – it also recently introduced adverts on its platform. As mobile services become increasingly more integrated, it seems that big technology companies feel that they can no longer just serve one function if they are to keep up with their rivals and grow revenues.
Given that the majority of Snapchat’s users are under 18, it’s doubtful as to whether Snapcash will really take off. Snapchat will also have to prove that the feature is secure after recent security breaches and concerns over explicit photos being leaked, although the data is actually handled by Square.
In any case, Snapchat is throwing its hat into the ring and hoping to get a slice of the growing, yet crowded, mobile payments sector.