In news that should have perennial Worst Company In America candidate PayPal quaking in its boots, Visa has announced it is working on a service that will allow users to send money — from their Visa card, bank account or even cash — directly to another person’s Visa debit, credit or prepaid card.
According to the AP, most users only need the recipient’s e-mail address or cellphone number to initiate the transfer. The payee will receive a notice that the money is on the way at which point they enter their Visa card number to finalize the transaction. If the funds are transferred to a debit or prepaid card, it’s counted as a deposit. If it’s sent to a credit card, it counts as a payment on the card.
In the case of cash, the greenbacks will need to be taken to a participating bank, which would then transfer the money to the recipient’s card.
A Visa rep tells the AP that the company expects banks, who determine the related fees, will start offering this service by mid-year. And considering Visa’s 1.85 billion cardholders around the world, this service could quickly put a dent in existing person-to-person services like PayPal.