- Facebook will begin rolling out its payment service, Facebook Pay, on its core app and Messenger in the U.S. this week. In a Tuesday blog post, the company said it plans to eventually launch the service on Instagram and WhatsApp.
- The new payments system supports most major credit and debit cards, as well as PayPal, per the blog post.
- "Payments are processed in partnership with companies like PayPal and Stripe, and is built on existing financial infrastructure and partnerships," the company said.
Although Facebook already allows person-to-person (P2P) payments through Messenger, the new service promises to unify the company's payments capabilities throughout its suite of mobile platforms.
"Facebook Pay is part of our ongoing work to make commerce more convenient, accessible and secure for people on our apps," Deborah Liu, Facebook vice president of marketplace and commerce, said in a blog post. "And in doing so, we believe we can help businesses grow and empower people everywhere to buy and sell things online. We'll continue to develop Facebook Pay and look for ways to make it even more valuable for people on our apps."
The company said Facebook Pay is separate from its digital wallet Calibra, which will run on the Libra network, the controversial cryptocurrency project.
Launch of the unified system comes just a month after the exodus of major payments companies from the Libra project. Mastercard, Stripe, Visa and PayPal, among others, have backed out, leaving the Libra Association without a major U.S. payments company. Yet, it appears the lack of confidence in Facebook's Libra project has not deterred the social media giant from entering the highly competitive P2P mobile payments space, where its competitors include Square's Cash App, PayPal's Venmo and Apple Pay.
Facebook said customers can use the service for fundraisers, in-game purchases, event tickets, P2P payments on Messenger, and purchases from select businesses on Facebook Marketplace.