Facebook will now let you send money in the United Kingdom with Messenger

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The service has been available stateside since 2015 and global expansion of payments via Messenger is a vital strategic plan for Facebook.

P2P payments first appeared in Messenger back in the USA in 2015.

On Monday, the social network announced that it was introducing peer-to-peer payments to its messaging app Messenger in the United Kingdom, letting people send cash to their friends and contacts. Here's how it works.

Facebook is launching peer-to-peer payments in Messenger in the UK.

Facebook is making it easier to send money to your friends, and bug them for any cash they owe you. Or maybe you've taken a cab with a friend and had to split the fare with cash. People will need to sign up with their debit cards to send or receive money.

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You could use a peer-to-peer payments service to send that friend money, which is handy if you never have cash on you.

Other firms in the US market include Square, which lets users swap money via its "Cash" app, and Paypal, which acquired payment service Venmo. Messenger has also added a falling animation of £££s for some fun, Facebook said.

The feature has existed in the USA since 2015, but this is the first time it has been launched anywhere outside of the U.S. or in a currency other than dollars. Earlier this year, Facebook rolled out group payments feature within its Messenger app, allowing users to pay either everyone in the group or individual members. It'll be interesting to see if the same happens in the UK. "Finally, Messenger payments are offered as a regulated payment service, meaning they're directly subject to consumer protection requirements". When you're in a chat with a friend, you will be able to press the blue "plus" symbol and you then select the payments option.

The move puts Facebook in competition with payment companies like Paypal, as well as - to an extent - the British app-only bank Monzo, which has become known for its simple peer-to-peer payments. The money is then transferred in up to three business days.