WhatsApp is gearing up to offer a free app to small-to-medium sized businesses, though it hasn’t outlined the specific functionality of the app. The enterprise solution will allow global companies “to provide customers with useful notifications like flight times, delivery confirmations, and other updates.”
The app called WhatsApp Business, is now being tested with new tools that will help businesses to connect and communicate easily with its consumers. "Were building and testing new tools via a free WhatsApp Business app for small companies and an enterprise solution for bigger companies operating at a large scale with a global base of customers, like airlines, e-commerce sites, and banks," WhatsApp said in a blogpost.
These businesses will be able to use these solutions to provide customers with useful notifications like flight times, delivery confirmations, and other updates, it added. A green tick will be shown next to the contacts name to show that WhatsApp has verified that the stated phone number belongs to that business account.
"Were looking forward to making it possible for people to connect with businesses in a fast and personal way, and giving businesses the tools to make that easier to do," WhatsApp Chief Operating Officer Matt Idema said. The company said the chats between the user and the business would be end-to-end encrypted.
"Some businesses may use service providers to manage their messages, and those service providers may be able to read the messages you send to those businesses," it added. Users can stop a business from contacting them by blocking them.
Founded in 2009, WhatsApp was acquired by social networking giant Facebook in 2014 for a whopping USD 22 billion, with more than 1 billion active users globally.