WhatsApp

Technology • Internet & Web
Brazilian Central Bank authorises money transfers via WhatsApp
WhatsApp screens displaying bank transfers
WhatsApp screens displaying bank transfers Credit: WhatsApp

The Brazilian Central Bank granted on March 30th operating authorizations that allow the carrying out of bank transfers by WhatsApp. According to the model authorized by the Central Bank, WhatsApp will only initiate transactions between customer accounts at the financial institutions in which they are account holders. Also, according to the BC, transactions can be made from the date when WhatsApp makes the functionality available to the customer and the rate charged for the bank transaction will be defined by the application. In a press release, the Central Bank estimated that the measure could lead to a reduction in the costs of financial transactions.

Technology • Internet & Web
WhatsApp now offers voice and video calls on desktop app
WhatsApp now offers voice and video calls on desktop app
Credit: WhatsApp/Facebook

WhatsApp announced it is adding support for voice and video calls to its desktop app, a feature that has been long-awaited by users.

"Voice and video calls on WhatsApp are end-to-end encrypted, so WhatsApp can’t hear or see them, whether you call from your phone or your computer. We’re starting with one-to-one calls on the WhatsApp desktop app so we make sure we can give you a reliable and high-quality experience. We will be expanding this feature to include group voice and video calls in the future," the company's statement read.

Technology • Internet & Web
WhatsApp delays enforcement of privacy terms by 3 months, following backlash
WhatsApp delays enforcement of privacy terms by 3 months, following backlash

WhatsApp announced Friday a three-month delay of a new privacy policy originally slated to go into effect on February 8th following widespread confusion over whether the new policy would mandate data sharing with Facebook. WhatsApp stated it wouldn’t enforce the planned update to its data-sharing policy until May 15.

"We’re now moving back the date on which people will be asked to review and accept the terms. No one will have their account suspended or deleted on February 8. We’re also going to do a lot more to clear up the misinformation around how privacy and security works on WhatsApp. We’ll then go to people gradually to review the policy at their own pace before new business options are available on May 15," the firm said in a blog post.

"There's been a lot of misinformation causing concern and we want to help everyone understand our principles and the facts," said the company, which earlier this week ran full-page ads on several newspapers in India, where it has amassed over 450 million monthly active users.

Technology • Internet & Web
WhatsApp user data will be automatically shared with Facebook following change of terms

WhatsApp has been informing its approximately two billion users via a pop-up message in the app that there have been changes to the terms of use.

Following an update to the terms of use and privacy policy, WhatsApp users must now agree that all information in the app may be used by the entire company. This includes user-stored data such as phone numbers, address book, profile names, profile pictures, status messages, and more.

Technology • Internet & Web
WhatsApp adds new "Search the web" feature
WhatsApp adds new "Search the web" feature
Credit: WhatsApp

WhatsApp added a new feature that makes it easier for users to verify whether the assertions made in forwarded messages they have received on the app are true. The new feature, called "Search the Web" works by allowing users to upload the message via their browser without WhatsApp ever seeing the message itself.

"Search the web" is being rolled out starting today in Brazil, Italy, Ireland, Mexico, Spain, UK, and US for those on the latest versions of WhatsApp for Android, iOS and WhatsApp Web.

Technology • Internet & Web
Brazilian Central Bank halts WhatsApp’s payments service
Screenshots of WhatsApp Pay in Brazil
Screenshots of WhatsApp Pay in Brazil Credit: WhatsApp

Just a week after its launch in the country, WhatsApp Pay was suspended by the Central Bank of Brazil.

The bank authority released a statement suggesting it hadn’t had the opportunity to analyse WhatsApp’s payment service before its rollout, and that was a mandatory step before the service could be launched.

WhatsApp payments partners for in Brazil are required to suspend money transfers on the app or will face fines and administrative sanctions.

Technology • Internet & Web
WhatsApp rolled out digital payment solution to users in Brazil
Screenshots of WhatsApp Pay in Brazil
Screenshots of WhatsApp Pay in Brazil Credit: WhatsApp

After testing a beta version in India, WhatsApp rolled out a system across Brazil on Monday that allows users to send money to individuals or local businesses within a chat, attaching payments as they would a photo or video.

The messaging application has more than 120 millions in the country, and small businesses already use WhatsApp as a marketing tool to answer questions or send catalogs.

“Payments on WhatsApp are beginning to roll out to people across Brazil beginning today and we look forward to bringing it to everyone as we go forward,” the company said in the post.