Snapchat are partnering with Square Cash to launch Snapcash, through which US users over 18 years of age who own a debit card can make micro-payments to each other. Wired UK seemed to indicate in their podcast last week that Facebook might make a play for them, but I disagree. For one, it was reported earlier in the year that they are already looking at creating a similar service using WhatsApp. In any case, Snapcash isn’t the first instance of this service: WeChat started offering a similar money transfer service to its users in China over the summer.
The Snapcash ad below is very Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory-esque. Platform-wise, I like the fact that the service uses the $ symbol as the gateway to switching to transfer mode.
These are all really interesting events for the financial services industry, which is undergoing some pretty heated action and is poised to only get hotter. Tom Loverro, Venture Investor at RRE Partners in the US drew up this diagram of how finance is being disrupted there. I used it to model a very basic version of what is going on here in the UK, which is not as heated but not to be taken lightly.
The UK banks are banding together to offer mobile payment services like Zapp and Paym slowly but surely (I’d love to know usage figures, which I suspect aren’t that high yet), and of course Barclays is a leader in the retail banking space with Pingit (there was a very interesting presentation I saw by someone who worked on launching it at the recent Geek Girl Conference).
If I was running my own business, I’d work on trying to mock up a slide like this to see where I need to skill up and/or invest in.