The new service is the result of a partnership between Snapchat and mobile payment service Square. Financial details of the partnership reportedly remain undisclosed.
Mashable said the deal also provides Square with access to Snapchat’s more than 100 million monthly active users. According to the news outlet, when you register for Snapchat, you also sign up for a Square account.
In a company blog post about its new service, Snapchat said Square securely stores a user’s debit card and will promptly process the user’s payment and send cash directly to a recipient’s bank account.
“We set out to make payments faster and more fun, but we also know that security is essential when you’re dealing with money. Square has a ton of experience in this area and our teams have been hard at work to make Snapcash a great experience for everyone,” said the blog post.
Mashable noted that trust is an issue for Snapchat in the wake of leaked pictures and videos from the app.
TechCrunch, which also reported the news, pointed to Snapchat’s previous privacy and security problems.
Here’s how Snapcash works, according to the company blog: Users simply swipe into the chat function of the app, type the dollar sign and a monetary amount, then tap the green button to initiate the deposit. TechCrunch reports that the money will be waiting for the recipient when he or she registers if he or she hasn’t done so already.
“If the friend doesn’t sign-up to accept the payment within 24 hours,” stated TechCrunch. “The cash will be refunded so you don’t have to worry about money…disappearing.”
According to the company, the service is available only to Snapchat users in the United States who possess a debit card and are at least 18 years old. Mashable reported that a Snapchat spokesperson said the service is rolling out on Android immediately, with an iOS version expected soon.
Mashable reported that Snapcash adds to Snapchat’s recent push to grow beyond its origins as a chat app. According to the news outlet, the company is engaged in talks with media companies to produce content for its platform, recently started running advertisements, and has entered the live-event space.
Mashable also suggested that Snapchat has become an “intriguing competitor” in the money-transfer and mobile-payment market currently led by PayPal and Venmo. TechCrunch concluded its report of the new service by stating that “by wedging itself into [peer-to-peer] payments through a consumer app that tens of millions of people already use with their close friends, Snapcash could inject itself into the lives of people who never considered downloading a finance app.”