Facebook is Getting Into Your Wallet. Literally.

When you think about all the information that Facebook collects, it can really start to paint a scary picture. We’ve heard the stories online and in the news about information being sold and stolen through cybercrime. Now Facebook is taking another step deeper inside your personal life with the creation of Calibra, which has recently been renamed to Novi.

What’s Novi?

Novi, previously named Libra, is an app designed to enable users to securely move a type of digital cryptocurrency similar to Bitcoin: Libra. This feature is unlike Apple Wallet, PayPal or even Venmo. It doesn’t just transfer money and store funds. Its purpose is to act as its own bank with low or no fees. It’s supposed to simplify the movement of money from consumers and business owners through any smartphone device around the world.

Issues With the Startup

The goal of Novi is to be accessed by billions of people worldwide who don’t have access to a bank account. Novi wants to be a currency that can be used by everyone. What’s the problem? For starters, no one really cares. With all of the headlines Facebook has been generating lately, the last thing consumers are going to get excited for is a product developed by Facebook that literally holds all of your money.
There are already successful money wallet companies out there, the biggest being PayPal and Venmo (also owned by PayPal), Zelle, and Square. Many apps also have their own form of transferring money, like Snapchat’s Snapcash (which failed).
Is the market getting too saturated? The last thing anyone wants when a friend asks them to send five dollars is to shuffle through six different apps to make sure they have the same one as the recipient. Novi says that its purpose is to offer speed, mobility, and security (through blockchain technology) when making wireless money transactions. What are your thoughts on Novi? Do you think it could end up wiping out PayPal, Venmo, Square or Zelle?

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