Facebook's Messenger has been a a wild success. The platform has over 1 billion monthly active users, 300 million of whom use the service for voice or video calls.
On Monday, while on stage at Tech Crunch: Disrupt in San Francisco, David Marcus, the company's VP of messaging products, said the company is now giving developers tools to enable bots to accept payments without sending users to an external website.
That ability to make "native" payments should help accelerate commerce on the platform simply because it minimizes friction. Credit card info stored in Facebook or Messenger can be used to instantly make purchases within bots. This is launching now as a closed beta test, but will later roll out across the 34,000 developers that have joined the platform.
Marcus also told CNBC on Monday that the platform now has 33,000 bots, up from 18,000 in July. Despite that massive number of companies and consumers actively engaged on the platform, it won't generate any meaningful revenue for Facebook this year, and that's by design, according to Marcus. He's working on a much bigger long-term plan to use Messenger to augment revenue from Facebook's newsfeed ads, as well as to lay the groundwork for the app to become THE way people communicate in the future.