Circle coverage on BBC News
Over this weekend's Chinese New Year celebrations, millions of people will give each other cash-filled red envelopes, called hongbao in Mandarin. "Social messaging has become the defining app of the smartphone era," says Jeremy Allaire, chief executive of P2P payments app, Circle Pay. "Social payments has been a natural extension of this phenomenon - it's going to be the locus of most communications activity." Paying somebody by text is quick and easy, removing the hassle of having to go out to a cash machine and hand over money in person. All you usually need is their mobile phone number or email address. Circle Pay's Jeremy Allaire thinks social messaging and payments are the future The Chinese social media platforms operated by the tech giants Alibaba, Tencent and Baidu have spearheaded the social payments explosion in Asia.