Cash sharing apps have become a hot topic over the last several years. Payment share apps such as Venmo and Zelle have become integrated into many banks such as Bank of America, Capital One and Citibank. Payment share apps are increasingly stable and efficient ways to pay for a variety of things. However, these apps are fraught with controversy due to distrust over the movement of currency digitally. The idea of thousands of dollars, let alone $20, disappearing seemingly for no reason leads to an aura of scepticism around the apps.
Assuredly, though, they are safe ways to move money around and have a similar format to PayPal, a trusted digital currency mover since 1998. An important distinction to make about these apps is they are essential middle men for you and a bank. This becomes important when understanding how money moves. App services act as a sort of armoured car but instead of gas, it runs on lines of code, getting your money to businesses or other accounts safely and swiftly. This allows for quicker and more integrated access to your cash. With that comes more risks as well as rewards. This aside, the apps are more than just digital cars for several reasons.
Venmo was released in 2009 by a PayPal subsidiary as another foot in the mobile banking app market. While Venmo was released in 2009, it didn't reach mainstream popularity until 2015 and did not reach peak popularity until 2017. There are several ways to use the app. You can connect your bank account to the app, allowing for direct movement of money. You can also connect your physical card to the app, making it more of a digital wallet, or add funds to your Venmo balance like a classic PayPal account.
Zelle is a feeless cash sharing app launched in 2017 as a combative product to PayPal's Venmo. It connects you directly with your bank, much like Venmo, but Zelle is centered more so around direct-to-bank functionality. Zelle has a simplistic design that focuses on bank to recipient transfers and does not offer an in-app cash fund like Venmo.
Cash App, released in early February of 2018, is focused on being a digital wallet in an attempt to replace your physical one. It offers connectivity to most credit cards and puts emphasis on touchless pay. It even goes out of its way to offer bitcoin as a possible transaction. While acting as a digital wallet, it also creates your own “Cash Card,” which is the app’s version of a debit card utilizing direct deposit. Cash App offers connectivity with banks, but it pushes for the use of card and touchless pay as a means of transfer. Cash App also incorporates automatic cash additions to the Cash App wallet, or the balance within the app, as an alternative to manual money transfer.
Edited by Alexandra Sharp | firstname.lastname@example.org