PayPal is expanding its Venmo peer-to-peer payment service with in-app functionality. It’s a development that could hint at increased competition against mPayment platforms like Apple Pay and Android Pay, which also now offer in-app purchases.
PayPal says the service is only launching with two partners—food delivery service Munchery and event ticketing platform Gametime—a move suggesting that the company wants to test the waters of the market before expanding. Still, there’s good reason for PayPal to be confident in the move: The company says Venmo processed $7.5 billion in payments last year, suggesting growing popularity with users.
While the move represents an incursion into territory currently belonging to the big mPayment rivals, it pre-empts a rumored move on Apple’s part into peer-to-peer payments. Then again, all the major mPayment companies have likely expected growing combativeness from PayPal since the company’s break from parent company eBay last summer; it has increasingly shown an interest in a number of areas in the payments market, and indeed has been pretty explicit about aims to dominate the digital payments market on the whole, with the Venmo move being just the latest provocation.