Week in a Nutshell #10

Welcome to the tenth episode of the 'Week in a Nutshell’ series.

Money centric initiatives were the highlight of this week.

Headlines:

  1. Facebook Introduces Free Friend-To-Friend Payments Through Messages
  2. Now anybody can use Robinhood, the no-fee trading app

Facebook Introduces Free Friend-To-Friend Payments Through Messages

Now, you can transfer money to your friends while you are chatting with them on Facebook Messenger. You might think that you can already do this via PayPal or Venmo mobile app but I believe having this functionality within Facebook Messenger will provide better user experience. Let me explain this over an example.

You are chatting with your friend on Facebook Messenger trying to plan your weekend. Your friend finds a great event and she immediately buys 2 tickets. At this point, you want to pay for yours to your friend. Up until now at this point, you had to leave Facebook Messenger chat window, open Venmo mobile app, find your friend's name, make the payment, get back to Facebook Messenger chat window and finally let your friend know about the payment. As you can see, this requires more than 2 clicks and it is not a seamless user experience. Now think about being able to transfer the money to your friend without even leaving Facebook Messenger. Also, not all of my friends are using PayPal or Venmo so Facebook Messenger will solve this issue as well.

Users who want to transfer money on Facebook Messenger will need to enter their debit card details on Facebook. This means that a couple of months from now on, Facebook will have access to debit card details of millions of its user base. I won't be surprised if Facebook launches 'buy with one click' button for its newsfeed ads and 'buy/pay with Facebook account' button for e-commerce website since Facebook will already have the details for your payment method. 

I believe Facebook Messenger will continue to position itself closer to WeChat and Line by adding value added services such as peer-to-peer money transfer. On the other hand, What'sApp keeps on being laser focused on pure communication experience. I believe Facebook will continue to dominate the communication/messaging mobile apps category thanks to having strong positions in 2 different segments over Facebook Messenger and What'sApp.


Now anybody can use Robinhood, the no-fee trading app

Robinhood is an iPhone app that gives you the chance to buy and sell stocks without dealing with brokers and paying any service fees or trade fee for each transaction. There were 700,000 people on the waitlist when Robinhood gradually launched its iPhone app back in December 2014. Now, you don't have to wait any longer to install Robinhood app. It is available to all iPhone users.

Before Robinhood, it was really hard for a person who wanted to make a small investment on stock exchange due to high broker commission fees and high trade fee for each transaction. Basically, stock exchange was not a feasible investment channel for small investors due to the hidden costs of making an investment on stock exchange. However, this is changing now. Thanks to Robinhood, you can make buy / sell stocks on stock exchange without worrying about brokerage fees, minimum deposit limits and etc.

Robinhood aims to democratize access to the financial markets by removing the obstacles for all. Buying a stock and making an investment is just couple of swipes away from you. I cannot wait to start using the Android version.


We came to the end of the tenth episode of ‘Week in a Nutshell’ series. If you enjoyed this post, I'd be happy if you could comment, share, like and/or recommend it. 

Thanks,
Birkan