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Facebook to test potential PayPal payment rival, report says

August 15, 2013|By Salvador Rodriguez
  • Facebook will soon test a payment feature that could one day compete with PayPal.
Facebook will soon test a payment feature that could one day compete with… (Simon Dawson / Bloomberg )

Facebook may step into PayPal's territory as it reportedly is set to test a feature that lets users make purchases on e-commerce mobile apps using their information on Facebook.

The test feature would benefit users who have previously shared their credit card information with Facebook, either for gaming apps on the side or for the company's gifts feature. When those users go to participating mobile e-commerce apps, the test feature will speed up the checkout process by using the billing information users have already given to Facebook.

AllThingsD reported the feature and said it will launch in the next month or so. The report said Facebook confirmed the feature. Facebook could not be reached for comment.

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The first partner is JackThreads, an online shopping site for young men, according to AllThingsD, which said Facebook was interested in partnering with JackThreads because some of its customers may be gamers and have previously shared payment information with Facebook.

For now, the report said, the Facebook test feature won't actually handle payment processing but will simply provide the billing information and speed along the process. But of course, if the test is successful, Facebook may decide to get involved with payment processing, simultaneously cutting out competitors and creating another line of revenue.

Getting involved with its users' payments may also be beneficial for Facebook as it would gain data on their shopping habits. That information could help the social network better target ads.


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