Facebook is stepping up on monetization. The social network has just announced that Uber will now be integrated into its Messenger instant messaging application. It will thus be possible to order a vehicle with a driver directly from the application, without being redirected to a page or an external application.
For this, users need to get the latest available version of the app. Then, to book a ride, there is no need to leave a conversation. When a postal address appears during a dialogue, this then forms a hypertext link. By clicking on it, the application then offers the option “Request a ride”(“ Request a ride ”).
In the footsteps of WeChat
Still in the experimental phase, this option is only available in certain regions of the United States. Facebook announces, however, that it plans to deploy this service in other countries. Worldwide, Messenger claims 700 million users. Also, Mark Zuckerberg’s firm announces that it should also partner with other transport services.
With this new service, Facebook intends to better monetize the audience of its application. A model which in itself is not new. In Asia, many instant messaging applications have become real e-commerce platforms, especially for O2O (online to offline) services. Thus, the Chinese WeChat (more than 600 million users) already offers to carry out transactions, to book a meal, a taxi or to buy plane tickets. This is also the case with Line in Japan, which has even launched into flash sales.