Facebook Messenger payments arrive in the UK

Facebook Red envelope feature

Messenger is one of Facebook's most requested services in the United Kingdom and France, making these markets ripe for the platform's new P-to-P payments capabilities.

David Marcus is the head of Messenger at Facebook and a senior executive there. Converting just a small percentage of this base into users of P-to-P payments could be highly lucrative, particularly if the social network can enable cross-border remittance capabilities.

Messenger users will be able to add a payment card to their account, and then send and receive money directly from conversation threads with contacts. Facebook has a greater opportunity to monetize its service with additional revenue streams aside from advertising, including subscription fees for publications, earning a commission on payments and charging users to list products for sale in the Marketplace section. Additionally, Apple has its own Venmo-like money transfer service in the works that's due to be released sometime this fall.

You could use a peer-to-peer payments service to send that friend money, which is handy if you never have cash on you. David Marcus, head of Messenger, said that, in the USA, most people use payments in Messenger to send less than $50 at a time. Users will need to link a debit card to their account before sending or receiving money.

Is Facebook Messenger payments free?

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That said, most of these issues can be overcome by Facebook's sheer scale.

Facebook Messenger payments isn't as universal as some offerings, as it requires both parties to register their details and cards with the service.

Is Facebook Messenger payments secure? "Finally, Messenger payments are offered as a regulated payment service, meaning they're directly subject to consumer protection requirements".

If that isn't a promising prospect to keep with you throughout the day, I don't know what is.

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