WhatsApp begins test aimed at integrating business into its app

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WhatsApp Business

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Finally, WhatsApp is gearing up to integrate business into its app before the end of the year. With one billion users, Facebook-owned WhatsApp is one of the biggest chat apps in the world.

It is one app that has come a long way since Facebook acquired it in 2014. From growing its user base to adding some highly innovative features and ideas; integrating business into the app is one step that might change a lot of things.

WhatsApp, in a message it posted on its official blog says it’s updating its policy to reflect the new change. The update is aimed at preparation for testing the with select users “in the months ahead.”

“But as we announced earlier this year, we want to explore ways for you to communicate with businesses that matter to you too, while still giving you an experience without third-party banner ads and spam. Whether it’s hearing from your bank about a potentially fraudulent transaction, or getting notified by an airline about a delayed flight, many of us get this information elsewhere, including in text messages and phone calls. We want to test these features in the next several months, but need to update our terms and privacy policy to do so,” WhatsApp announced on Thursday.

Wondering what kind of conversation that could be initiated between business and individual users on WhatsApp? TechCrunch suggests it could be receipts, delivery and maybe flight notifications. However, the company, through a statement posted on its page on Thursday said:

“We will explore ways for you and businesses to communicate with each other using WhatsApp, such as through order, transaction, and appointment information, delivery and shipping notifications, product and service updates, and marketing. For example, you may receive flight status information for upcoming travel, a receipt for something you purchased, or a notification when a delivery will be made. Messages you may receive containing marketing could include an offer for something that might interest you. We do not want you to have a spammy experience; as with all of your messages, you can manage these communications, and we will honor the choices you make.”

That gives us a fair insight into what the company’s plans are when it starts testing or fully integrates business with the app.

Still no ads—much unlike Facebook though

Still no ads in sight, which is pretty much what most of us want—it’s so annoying to have to deal with torrents of ads these days. You would think integrating business into WhatsApp would lead to third-party ads and banners showing up everywhere on your favorite app, but WhatsApp says no. Things will probably stay that way for a while, but don’t get carried away because all it takes is a change or an update on company policy to start seeing banners and ads flying about.

Sharing data and user phone number with Facebook

WhatsApp also announced that it would begin sharing data and user phone number with Facebook. Users can however, decide to opt out of this option if they choose to.

What’s your view on plans by WhatsApp to integrate business into its app? You can share your view by using the comment box.

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Author: Ola Ric

Ola Ric is a professional tech writer. He has written and provided tons of published articles for professionals and private individuals. He is also a social commentator and analyst, with relevant experience in the use of social media services.

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