Facebook’s payment service in the U.K. and France is being shut down after it failed to take off in the two countries.
Finextra, citing a Facebook spokesman, reported the P2P payment service that worked through Messenger was launched in 2017. Facebook had been able to get all of the leading banks in the U.K. on board but the service didn’t resonate with consumers. In order to send money via Messenger, users press a blue symbol within chat. Both sides of the chat had to provide debit card details and the amount being sent. The fact that both sides were required to provide payment information was one of the reasons it failed to take off with consumers, according to the news outlet.
“We are terminating the ability to send and receive payments in Messenger in both the U.K. and France effective June 15,” a Facebook spokesman said in the report. “After evaluating how we give people the best experiences in Messenger, we made the decision to focus our efforts on experiences that people find most useful. Users have been notified in preparation for this change.”
The spokesman said the ability to make charitable donations will remain in place, according to the report.
The U.K. and France were part of Facebook’s expansion of the payment service outside the U.S. Facebook has been pushing into the digital payments market exploring ways to leverage its messaging platforms. Recently Facebook has reportedly begun looking at launching its own cryptocurrency so users can send money to each other via its messaging platform. In March, The New York Times reported Facebook is developing a coin for WhatsApp users so they can send money to friends and family. The paper reported at the time that Facebook has held conversations with cryptocurrency exchanges about selling the coin to consumers via an exchange. The report noted a product could be launch in the first half of the year. The efforts come as Facebook grows its internal blockchain team.