My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: Why @Snapchat is rolling out Snapcash Mobile Money Platform Teenagers and Millennials

Monday, December 1, 2014

Why @Snapchat is rolling out Snapcash Mobile Money Platform Teenagers and Millennials

Snapchat has launched Snapcash, a service that allows the Millennials (ages 18 to 28) to send cash to each other as reported in the article “Snapchat launches Snapcash payment feature with Square”, published 17 November 2014, BBC News.

Snapchat announced this on Wednesday November 17th 2014 via their Press Release on their Snapchat blog article “Introducing Snapcash”, published November 17th 2014, Snapchat Blog. Check out the YouTube video below that not only explains how the new service works but strangely evokes themes drawn from Prohibition era of the Flapper-glam Roaring 20’s juxtaposed in a 21st Century setting!

This product comes on the heels of their Snapchat Discovery Platform announced Friday October 17th 2014 that debuts Advertising on Snapchat for the first time as I’d reported in my blog article entitled “Snapchat does Advertising with Snapchat Discovery – 100 Million Strong Potential for reaching Teenagers with Snapchat Stories for Advertising”.

Snapcash Origins – Square CEO sends Snapchat CEO US$25 and Snapcash is born

Apparently the idea for Snapcash originated back in May of 2013 when Square CEO Jack Dorsey sent Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel US$25 as a demonstrating of how his service works. His response via email, as distilled in the article “Snapchat to Let You Send Money to Friends, Thanks to Square” published November 17, 2014, 12:25 PM PST by Kurt Wagner, Recode, is an indication of the forge in which ideas spawn and spread their leathery wings to glide the skies of real-time implementation.

Powered by Square, it’s supposedly secure, as Snapchat doesn’t record the Debit Card numbers entered, merely acting as a conduit for Square. Plus Snapcash only takes Prepaid Debit Card; Hackers groan as it’s nearly pointless to steal one sans its PIN (Personal Identification Number).

So now that I’ve made it clear to hackers why stealing Cash from a Debit Card is pointless, how does Snapcash Work? Better Question, when will the other Mobile Social Networks roll out a similar Feature?

Snapchat rolls out Snapcash – Teenagers and Millennials may be the Catalyst for Mobile Money

If you watched and listened to the song in the audio-themed Snapcash Advert, you’d have caught on as to how to use Snapcash. For the more literary among us who like reading thing in print, the Business Insider article “Snapchat Just Launched A Dead-Simple Way To Send Your Friends Money”, published NOV. 17, 2014, 3:35 PM by ALYSON SHONTELL, Business Insider beautifully explains how it works:

1.      Enter your Debit Card information into Square, which is an embedded widget inside of Snapchat API (Application Interface)
2.      Sent a Private message toy your friend on Snapchat begging you for cash
3.      Type the $ sign and the amount
4.      Snapchat recognizes the entry and a green “$” button lights up
5.      Press the button to sent that amount

A few caveats though.

Snapcash accepts Visa or Mastercard Debit Cards; not so sure about other types of Prepaid Cards. Also, there is a limit of US$2,500 per week, so hacking a Snapchat account in a bid to launder money through a Prepaid Debit Card as I’d once explained in my blog article entitled “Jamaican Music Industry 2 Years post-Ban - How Artiste and Booking Agents Launder Money”.

If you're friend has no Snapchat account, no problem; you can still send them cash and they can still receive it, provided they sign up for Snapchat within 24 hours as pointed out in the article “Snapchat Now Lets You Send Money To Friends Through Snapcash Deal With Square Cash” published Nov 17, 2014 by Josh Constine, TechCrunch.

So no, your cash won't self-destruct. That's mainly a thing for the Private IM (Instant Messages) and Videos, not the money!

Snapcash and Snapchat’s Privacy concerns – Snapcash will be profitable, once it goes global

Many Millennials (ages 18 to 28) might not be so trusting of Snapchat after 200,000 of their nudies went viral after the Snappening, only hack that really resonated with their demographic as reported in my blog article entitled “200,000 Naked Teenagers in Snapchat’s Snappening – How Teenagers Private Parts got swiped by Child Pornography Admins in the Thomas Crowne Affair”.

Still, it's clearly not a profitability move, as Millennials aren't exactly the most spendthrift of people as pointed out in the article “Will Snapchat's Snapcash Be A Success?”, published 11/26/2014 @ 12:39PM, by Quora, Forbes.

Snapchat may make enough money from the Square partnership to merely cover their expenses, with the real beneficiary being Square, who’ll gain more new members with each Square account created within Snapchat than they do currently as a standalone App.

Undoubtedly, other Mobile Social Networks will follow; already Facebook and Twitter have plans for a “Buy” Button as described in my blog article entitledTwitter’s one-click Buy Button – How One-Click E-Commerce is Twitter’s Great Smurfberry Scam Confessions of a Shopaholic”, so Mobile Money may not be too far behind in their plans!

Snapchat and the Digicel connection – Possible model for Digicel’s Mobile Money Platform

As for Jamaicans, my main concern here, this has nothing to do with us. However, if you can set up a VPN as described in my blog article entitled Surfing the Internet Anonymously using VPN - How to use Streaming Set Top Boxes over VPN” and log on the internet using a Wi-Fi Router and sign up for Snapchat, you might just be able to set up this service on your smartphone.

Then that American girl you met on FB and who mentioned having a Snapchat account can not only send you nude pics of her svelte doppelganger, but naked cash as well straight to your Scotia Visa Debit Card as described in my Geezam blog article entitled “How to use Scotia VISA Debit Card Online” .

It may also be a herald for how Digicel may choose to launch their version of Mobile Money either in December 2014 or by early 2015 in the Year of the Sheep.

The model used by Snapchat gives an indication as to how Telecom Provider Digicel might roll out a Mobile Money Platform powered by Scotia Bank in Jamaica as predicted in my blog article entitled “Digicel to roll out Mobile Money Service in 2014 - Haiti Tcho Tcho Mobile Love is Bringing the Boom with ScotiaBank heralds Cashless Society by 2015”.  

Best of all, not only is it totally secure, but it won't Self-Destruct!

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