Amazon says that it will discontinue its WebPay service on October 13.
The service is offered by Amazon’s subsidiary, Amazon Payments Inc, which also lets Amazon members pay on other e-commerce sites using their Amazon account.
WebPay enables Amazon users to transfer funds between one another, similar to PayPal. Unlike PayPal, the service is free. Users are only responsible for bank/card fees when getting money in and out of Amazon.
It is possible that the company no longer found the business profitable, or at least beneficial in keeping users within the Amazon ecosystem. The stated reason for its decision:
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“We are not addressing a customer pain point particularly better than anyone else. We’ve learned a great deal about how and when customers want to send money and will look for ways to use these lessons in the future.”
Transactions initiated before October 13 but not yet completed will be returned.
Amazon says there will be no other alternative offering similar functionality. A 2012 patent filing suggests that Amazon may be working on a more sophisticated payment platform, including potential support for bitcoins.