Social networks testing payment waters

by: Brian Day

Both Twitter and Facebook appear to be taking even larger steps toward adding payments tools.

Several Twitter users recently reported seeing a new “payments and shipping” option in the settings of the social media site’s Android app. Although the link isn’t yet functional, the potential for the offering seems imminent. Twitter often tries out new features with a limited number of users before a larger rollout. This “leaked link” is the latest in a series of moves (including Twitter’s recent acquisition of payment startup CardSpring) that suggest Twitter may soon be launching a shopping platform.

Twitter has forayed into the ecommerce arena before by offering deals via hashtag and even connecting consumers’ Amazon shopping carts to their Twitter feeds. Additionally, in June, a “Buy now” button surfaced within some tweets that linked to the shopping site Fancy. As with the apparent “payments and shipping” test, Twitter’s “Buy now” button showed up on mobile, but not on the web.

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