Amazon is set to investigate the use of voice assistant Alexa to make direct person-to-person (P2P) money transfers – a move that would pit the e-commerce giant against the raft of companies offering the facility on mobile, The Wall Street Journal reported.
According to the publication, Amazon has already integrated some of the Alexa team with staff from its online wallet service Amazon Pay, with a view to developing voice control for transactions.
By offering P2P transactions, it would directly compete with traditional financial services providers and the growing number of social media companies and mobile applications offering such services.
Rivals in its home market of the US include PayPal brand Venmo, bank-backed service Zelle, Facebook, Snapchat, Google and Apple – in addition to high street bank services. Internationally, it would still face the likes of PayPal, Google and Apple in addition to a host of regional and local players in each market.
Amazon is also reportedly mulling ways to enable point of sale payments in physical stores through tie-ups with retailers.
The WSJ added Amazon’s progress on moving deeper into financial services were still at an early stage.