Facebook Messenger unveiled today that it will pilot a feature that will allow users to split payments in the Messenger app. Facebook will begin testing the “free and fast way to share the cost of bills and expenses” next week for users in the U.S.
In a group chat or payments hub within Messenger, users select “get started” and can split a bill evenly or modify each person’s contribution amount. After the amounts are determined, users enter a personalized message, verify their Facebook Pay details, and send their request in a group chat in Messenger.
The launch of Facebook Messenger’s Split Pay feature comes as “Request to Pay” is heating up in the fintech world. Venmo has used QR codes to facilitate person-to-person payments since 2017, and Messenger began using similar functionality in June of this year.
Outside of the P2P realm, Request to Pay is becoming a popular way to replace payment methods such as cards, invoices, and direct debits in B2C and B2B transactions. Essentially, customers can pay for everyday purchases within a messaging framework. Shoppers can, for example, pay for their lunch by opening a push notification on their phone and accepting the payment, thereby finalizing the transaction.