For the most part, WhatsApp has stuck to its primary goal of being a messaging service for billions of users around the world. But it's going to be more than just that for 400 million+ users in India. Speaking at Facebook's Fuel for India 2020 event, Abhijit Bose, head of WhatsApp India, revealed that users would soon be able to purchase pension and insurance products on WhatsApp.
According to Bose, the company has already been running pilots of the program, which can be expected to go live for consumers before the end of 2020. Once live, financial services companies will be able to tap into WhatsApp's extensive distribution in India to sell micro-finance products to millions with relative ease.
While the first phase will see the launch of insurance and pension products, WhatsApp already has plans to expand its offerings by running pilots of ed-tech and agri-tech products. And given that the messaging service also runs on some popular feature phones such as the Jio Phone — an affordable 4G-enabled feature phone offered by India's largest telco — distribution shouldn't be the greatest of challenges.
Recently, WhatsApp also received regulatory approval to roll out its peer-to-peer payment service in India.
- Times of India