This new feature of Novi on WhatApp according to Novi’s president Stephane Kasriel for now is only available to a limited number of people in the United States, the function will be instant and without cost.
Despite opposition from some US legislators to Meta’s digital currency offerings, the development of the social network giant’s digital wallet, Novi, continues apace.
On Wednesday, Stephane Kasriel, the president of Meta’s cryptocurrency and finance unit Novi, said that WhatsApp, Meta’s messaging subsidiary, had begun testing transactions through Meta’s Novi wallet.
The new function, which is available to a “limited number of people” in the United States, allows users to send and receive money on WhatsApp “instantly and without costs,” according to the executive.
There’s a new way to try the @Novi digital wallet. Starting today, a limited number of people in the US will be able to send and receive money using Novi on @WhatsApp, making sending money to family and friends as easy as sending a message. 💸💬 pic.twitter.com/dGz3lejri7
— Stephane Kasriel (@skasriel) December 8, 2021
Since launching the Novi pilot in mid-October, Kasriel said Meta has been able to test and understand which features and capabilities are “most relevant to consumers.” Novi does not affect the privacy of WhatsApp personal messages and calls, which are “always end-to-end encrypted,” he said.
On Twitter, Will Cathcart, the head of WhatsApp at Meta, verified the story, stating that some U.S. customers can now send and receive money using Novi on WhatsApp.
“People use WA to coordinate sending money to loved ones, and now Novi will make it secure, instantaneous, and fee-free,” he stated.
Meta’s digital currency move
In October, Meta, formerly known as Facebook, announced the beginning of a digital currency pilot with Coinbase, a prominent crypto exchange, and Paxos, a stablecoin firm.
Pax Dollar (USDP), a dollar-pegged stablecoin produced by blockchain trust business Paxos, was used in the pilot, which began in the United States and Guatemala.
The Open Markets Institute, a non-profit based in the United States, wrote to a number of regulators, including the Department of Justice, claiming that Meta may be “in the illegal business of taking deposits without a bank license.”
USDP is one among the minor stablecoins, according to the organization, with “much less liquidity and usage” than the leading stablecoins like Tether (USDT) and USD Coin (USDC).
The Open Markets Institute statement noted, “There are significant legal and regulatory concerns for Facebook’s pilot that merit specific attention by the agencies.”