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Filtering by Category: Feature Announcements

We've just upped our game with an exclusive festival-themed emoji set

· by Ny Vo, Product Manager

We’ve been working on a neat little feature that allows us to add custom emojis to Venmo so you can have a little more fun with your payments.

We know that music festival season is right around the corner so in our latest app update on both iOS and Android, we introduced a festival-themed emoji set. Yup, now you can spice up your payment notes and show off your festival shenanigans.

Have fun using these emojis with your friends on Venmo because they don’t exist anywhere else!

Custom festival emojis in the Venmo Feed

Pro-tips:

  • Upgrade to the most up-to-date Venmo app on your phone
  • Access the new emojis by tapping on the emoji picker
  • Type in ‘fest’ and choose a fun emoji payment note
venmo-custom-emoji-screenshots.png

Pro-pro-tip:

  • Type 'emoji' in the payment note field to see only the custom emojis

What custom emojis should we design next? Drop us a note at emojis@venmo.com.

Interested in a partnership? Send us an email to marketing@venmo.com.

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Sending money to friends from your 📱 just got even easier

· by Venmo

Venmo has always strived to make it easy to pay your friends. Whether you're walking out of a bar, in the 🚖 on the way home after a night out or texting after last night’s 🍴. Starting today, we’re making it easier than ever to include Venmo in those moments with the launch of Venmo integrations for Siri and iMessage in iOS 10.

Now, you can send money for the night’s 🍸 tab with Venmo using a simple Siri voice command. Just say, Hey Siri, Venmo Jonathan $40 for the best date ever.

And when you're texting with a friend about your recent adventure, he can 🐴⬆️ within iMessage without ever leaving the conversation. Select Venmo from the iMessage app store and give it a try.

We hope you’re as excited as we are about these ways to make sending and receiving 💰 even easier. If you have any questions about using Venmo with Siri or iMessage, check out our Help Center.

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It’s time to 🐴 ⬆️ on Venmo

· by Venmo

Today, we’re launching Venmo’s first-ever nationwide brand campaign called “Pony Up on Venmo.”

“Pony Up on Venmo” is both a twist on a common phrase and a reflection of what makes Venmo so special: it removes the awkwardness of asking someone to pay you back, and makes payments fun – whether it’s splitting the cost of 🍕 or a weekend getaway with friends.

Consider it a rally cry against those awkward money moments in everyday life.

Over the next two months, you’ll see Venmo in many familiar places. We’re unveiling our first-ever national 📺 commercial tonight on cable channels including Adult Swim, MTV and Comedy Central, and on digital networks like YouTube, Hulu and The Onion.

People in Austin, Chicago, Portland and Nashville will see billboards, street posters and murals in vibrant parts of town. And you’ll see other Venmo treats like 🍻 coasters, temporary tattoos and pizza boxes at bars and food joints - places where you’re already using Venmo to pay back friends - and even be able to catch a ride on a pony-themed pedicab. Make sure to 👀 for a “Pony Up” filter on Snapchat in those cities too.

In the Venmo app, we’re also adding a special Pony Up emoji combination and we have a plan to reimburse randomly selected users for their payments to friends.

Below, see a sneak peek of the ad that’s kicking off “Pony Up on Venmo" tonight.

“Now, we 🐴 ⬆️!”

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Group accounts on Venmo launched in beta

· by Lili Jiang, Product Manager

Venmo’s mission has always been to connect the world and empower people through payments. And today, we’re excited to announce that we are taking another step towards reaching that goal. We’re launching the beta for groups, a new feature that lets Venmo users create an account for their group or club.

No more lost checks, complicated spreadsheets, or delayed transactions. We’re bringing the magic of Venmo to group payments.

You can now easily make an account for your group to use for anything from paying dues, to issuing reimbursements, to collecting money for an event. Group accounts offer all the Venmo features you know and love, plus the ability to add managers to help administer the group.

If you’re interested in opening an account for your group, sign up at groups.venmo.com!

Feel free to share the news! And if you’re interested in being involved in a focus group or have ideas for the product, please email groupaccounts@venmo.com.

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Expanding Venmo Support

· by Tim Bakeris, Head of Support

Here at Venmo we have heard you loud and clear - we know you've been looking for a faster response from our support team, and we are excited to share that we’ve been hard at work building a team worthy of our incredible community.

Today, we are thrilled to announce three new support upgrades that will help get you the support you need, when you need it.

Live Chat

With the launch of in-app live chat you can now have a conversation with us right in the app. If you happen to leave the app while chatting with us, we’ll send you a push notification once we’ve responded (for this to work, make sure you have enabled Push Notifications on your phone). Our goal with live chat is to provide you with timely, effective support. The support team is really looking forward to being able to communicate with you in real time.

If you have questions and want to chat with us now, here’s how:

Step 1: Open the drawer by swiping right or tapping the three horizontal lines in the upper lefthand corner, then choose ‘Help Center’".

Step 2: Select the topic that most closely resembles your problem.

Step 3: Select the Help article that is most closely related to your problem. If it doesn’t help, just tap “Contact Us."

Step 4: Our support agents will be with you as quickly as we can. Chatting with us feels like texting a friend! Just make sure you have Push Notifications enabled on your device.

Upgraded In-App Search

Our in-app Help Center has been upgraded with native, searchable FAQs and help articles. Now you can find relevant help articles just by searching with a few words. For example, looking for information on how to move money to your bank? Type “transfer” and you’ll be shown all of the relevant information. Still can’t find what you’re looking for? Just start a conversation with one of our agents right from the article you’re reading.

24/7 Support Coverage

Over the past few months we’ve tripled the size of our support team and have expanded our hours of coverage to 24 hours a day, Monday through Friday. On the weekends we have people available from 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CDT). We anticipate full 24/7 availability by the end of 2015.

There is still a lot of work to do and we are very excited to continue improving upon the foundation we’ve built. We are fully committed to building the support team that you deserve. Thank you for being patient with us as we grow our team quickly to keep up with our fast-growing community!

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Two Cents: Episode Two

· by Terri Burns, Developer Evangelist Intern

Welcome to the second episode of Two Cents: NYC... Minus the Smell.

Listen in to hear about what projects Venmo interns are working on, hackathon prep, and Terri and Cassidy's two cents on imposter syndrome. We hope you enjoy!

And if you're just tuning in, Two Cents is a podcast series which follows the intership of Terri Burns, a Venmo developer evangelist intern, and Cassidy Williams, a full-time Venmo software engineer and developer evangelist. If you missed the first episode, Get Gif-y With It, listen here.

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New Blog Updates!

· by Terri Burns, Developer Evangelist Intern

We're excited to announce some fantastic updates to our blog!

We’ve made it easier to get around the blog with updates to the navigation bar. Now you can view posts by topic: Engineering, Feature Announcements, and Life at Venmo.

Additionally, our subscribe feature will allow you to sign up to receive email updates (which will come at most once a week) letting you know about new blog posts. And, you can also enjoy our archive of posts over the years, or search for a specific post you read in the past.

As always, feel free to leave a comment here on the blog or via some of our social channels to tell us more about what you'd like to read about in future posts!

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Two Cents: A Venmo Podcast

· by Terri Burns, Developer Evangelist Intern

Welcome to Two Cents.

This summer podcast series will be following the internship of Terri Burns, a developer evangelist intern, and Cassidy Williams, a full-time software engineer and developer evangelist here at Venmo. Stay tuned to hear more about what it's like to work at Venmo, the current state of NYC's technology scene, and hear Terri and Cassidy's two cents on on a given topic in tech and in life each episode. It's a beautiful marriage of payments and podcasts. Catch the first episode, Get Gif-y With It, below:

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Introducing Emoji Autocomplete

· by Dasmer Singh, iOS Engineer

Venmo payment notes are more than just a memo for transaction history. They provide a social way to make and request payments in the news feed, and users often write clever and witty messages to express their reason for payment.

With close to a quarter of all Venmo notes using an emoji, we wanted to take a look at how we could make using an emoji easier and more fun for our users. That's why today, we are releasing the Emoji Autocomplete feature in the Venmo iOS app! Simply tap on the emoji button, type the name of the emoji you’re looking for, and select it from the list. Emoji are also suggested as you type a payment note.

For example if you type “pizza”, you will be given the option to use a:

instead, or if you type “rent”, you will be given the option to use the emoji combination:

Of course, if you ever want to turn emoji suggestions off, you can always flip the switch in Settings.

Emoji Autocomplete is available today in the App Store. We hope that you love the feature as much as we do. As always we love getting user feedback — whether good or bad, so let us know what you think!

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Keep the fight in the ring this weekend with Venmo

· by Matthew Hamilton, Product Manager

Put away your boxing gloves -- there's no need to fight your friends to get your money back when you order the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight on Pay-Per-View this Saturday, May 2nd.

HBO and Showtime, along with Mayweather Promotions and Top Rank, have launched an innovative mobile ad experience with agencies PHD New York and Undertone. All you have to do is tap the ad to open the Venmo app where you can easily add your friends to pay for the event. Check out the mobile ad on Thrillist as well as mobile sites for College Spun and Men’s Fitness.

Instead of getting knocked out with the cost of covering the event for all of your friends, you can easily get paid back with Venmo.

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Love Pizza? Love Venmo? Papa John’s brings them both together.

· by Matthew Hamilton, Product Manager

People love to use Venmo to split pizza. In fact, the pizza slice is the most often used emoji on Venmo.

That’s why we’re excited to share that Papa John’s has integrated the Venmo API into their online and mobile checkout experience. So now, instead of chasing down your friends for their slice of the pie, it's easy to quickly request money from your friends for their share, as seen in the recent spot with NBA All Star Paul George. Here are the three easy steps:

1. Buy ALL THE PIZZA.

                                                            Gotta get buffalo chicken.

                                      Yeah, I want it ASAP.

2. Allow Papa John's access to your Venmo account, so you can request payments from your friends. 

3. Select your friends you want to share the pizza with.

Boom! The payment requests are out. Now you can enjoy your pizza without having to pester your friends to pay you back.

Go give it a shot and tell us what you think!

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Updates to Venmo Security

· by Aditya Pasumarty, Product Manager

We’re pleased to announce that multifactor authentication (MFA) is now available for all Venmo users on the web or the latest iOS and Android apps.

Our version of MFA requires an additional verification step when accessing Venmo from a new device. The feature is automatically turned on for all users in the latest version of the app. This is how it works:

  • Anytime we detect a sign-in attempt from a phone or browser you haven’t previously used to access Venmo, we will alert you via email and text a 6-digit code to your mobile phone. Entering this code correctly will let you successfully sign in to your Venmo account. So if someone knows your password, but doesn’t have access to your mobile phone, they won’t be able to get in.
  • After signing in, you may grant Venmo permission to remember that the device belongs to you. You won’t need a verification code when signing in from this device in the future. You will still need to enter your password correctly every time.

This feature is designed to maximize security while continuing to provide a quick and easy sign-in experience on devices you regularly use. As always, if you have questions please reach out to us at support@venmo.com or visit our help center for more information on multifactor authentication.

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Updates to Venmo Account Notifications

· by Michael Vaughan, Venmo GM

Today, we wanted to share a few updates we’ve made to Venmo account notifications, as well as make you aware of some additional product updates we’ll be releasing soon.

To enhance the security of your Venmo account, any time there is a change to your primary email address, password or phone number, we will send you an email notification.

Here is how it works:

  • If the primary email on your account is changed, you will receive a notification to the old primary email in addition to a verification for the new primary email.
  • If your password is changed, you will receive an email notification.
  • If the phone number on your account is changed, you will receive an email notification in addition to verification of the new phone number.

If we notify you of a change that you didn’t request, please immediately reset your password and contact us at support@venmo.com so we can confirm your account is secure.

Additionally, we're working to be more responsive to your support inquiries. We’ve made significant progress and will continue to improve in this area. We’ll also be rolling out multifactor authentication (MFA) in the coming weeks, among other product features, to further enhance user security and experience.

As always, please reach out to us at support@venmo.com with any questions and check back here for updates.

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A Note to Our Venmo Community

· by Michael Vaughan, Venmo GM

Recently, there’s been some commentary about the security of Venmo’s service and our responsiveness to our customers. It’s really important to everyone at Venmo that we address this with you directly. Our most important job at Venmo is to protect your money and provide you with a secure and easy way to make and share payments. This involves building an amazing product experience, but it also includes the teams of people behind the scenes who work tirelessly and are dedicated to protecting and supporting you - our fraud prevention, customer support and operations teams. We are all part of the community and we are grateful for those of you who have posed questions and provided feedback.

First things first, I want you to know a lot of what we do to protect you is happening behind the scenes. We focus on your safety and overall experience as a whole. We don’t build for features just for features’ sake. We’re processing billions of dollars of your payments every year and we maintain fraud rates favorable to industry standards and that is why we are comfortable guaranteeing your money if you are the victim of unauthorized transactions.

So….. here are the things we do to help keep you secure:

• We have fraud protection algorithms and systems that are always on. As much as I’d love to share more here, I don’t want to tip our hand to would-be fraudsters, but we back it up by guaranteeing your money from unauthorized transactions.

• We encrypt your sensitive financial information, including your bank account details. That data is never stored on your device. It’s not even visible to you. Ha. Take that. So, even if your crazy uncle got your password and logged into your account without you knowing, your bank account information is not visible. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same about all those checks you’re writing that have your full routing number and account number at the bottom. But that’s a story for another day.

• We are PCI-compliant and your debit/credit card info is encrypted and secure. You’re probably wondering “What is PCI-compliant?” Answer: it’s a credit card industry standard to make sure we’re doing our job to protect you. It’s kind of like putting on suspenders after you have a belt on, and then having your mom check your belt and snap your suspenders to make sure they’re both working.

• We set payment limits to protect against unauthorized transactions and only verified accounts have higher limits.

• We log you out of a web session after a certain period of inactivity.

And if that’s not enough, here are some things you can do for yourself to make you feel more comfortable when using Venmo:

• Set a passcode lock on the Venmo app (in addition to your phone lock) that’s required each time you open it. If you have an iPhone, you can use TouchID instead of a four-digit PIN to use fingerprint authentication for your Venmo lock.

• Disable any device and remotely log out of a session from your web settings if you have any concerns to prevent unauthorized transactions.

• Set options to receive text messages, push notifications or emails for payment transactions and a wide range of app activities so that you can monitor your account.

And, as with any online service: use a password that is strong and unique to your Venmo account. Venmo can’t guarantee the security of your other apps and services and sharing a password across many services can make your account vulnerable - as with any online service.

I want to assure you we are continuously improving product and security measures. We have a bunch of things we’ve been working on and we’ll share more of those with you soon. While we know that we measure up favorably against the industry standards for fraud prevention, we aren’t sitting back.

Another concern we’ve heard is some frustration in delays in getting help from us when you need it. We never want you to be disappointed and we’re sorry if that’s been the case. Our support team is the lifeblood of Venmo and we aim to be the biggest advocates for you. As we grow rapidly, we are working diligently to keep the level of service you should expect, and we’re hiring more people to work in support (if you are interested in joining us). We’re also looking at other areas where we can offer additional help more quickly including chat support and taking a new approach to support that will enable us to better interact with our users.

Venmo doesn’t exist without you, our users, and our job is to do right by you. We work to earn your trust every day. We take that responsibility seriously and we will do our best to be as transparent as possible with you as we continue on this journey. As part of that relationship, we value your feedback and we welcome it continuously to help make Venmo better. We’re all standing by to listen to your comments – please email us at support@venmo.com and we will answer every single question you have as quickly as we can.

Thanks for being a part of the Venmo family.

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Making Venmo easier, more secure, and more fun

· by Jesse Bentert

We’re excited to share with you a few new features we’ve been working on to continue to make Venmo an easy, secure, and fun way to pay people.

Easy: Link your bank without your checkbook

We’ve now made it even simpler to link a bank account to Venmo if you use Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, or Citibank. Instead of digging up your bank account and routing information, you can now link your bank using the username and password you use when logging into your bank’s website. As always, we use data encryption to protect your information (learn more about Venmo security).

You can now add a bank anytime, anywhere, without having to first go home to find a check.

Secure: Keep your account secure with Touch ID

Security has always been a top priority for us, which is why we enable you to password protect your Venmo app with a PIN. We’re also now taking advantage of the Touch ID technology for iOS. If you have an Apple device with Touch ID, you can now use your fingerprint instead of a PIN to access the Venmo app.

Fun: Get more people involved in your payments with Mentions

Venmo payments aren’t just monetary transactions - they’re stories that can be commented on, liked, and shared. And we know your story can involve more than just the person you’re paying. With today’s release, you can now mention other people in your payments to get them involved. Go out to dinner with a group of friends? Send a payment on behalf of more than one person? Make them a part of your story by mentioning them in a payment or comment. To get started, tap the @ sign or start typing in a friend’s name.

We’re very excited to roll out these new features. Follow us on Twitter to get more awesome updates.

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Meet Our Partner, Waves for Water

· by Shira Brettman

This past New Year's, Venmo resolved to double down on our mission to connect the world and empower people through payments. A half-year later, we might have dropped the ball on our gym memberships and gluten-free paleo diets, but we are still very much committed to this resolution.

This month, our partner, non-profit Waves for Water, in conjunction with our friends at PayPal, launched an international giving contest between nations. Waves for Water helps provide communities around the world with access to clean drinking water. Donations from this particular challenge will be used to purchase clean water filters for communities in Brazilian cities hosting the soccer games. Every $50 donated provides one million gallons of clean water—that means each dollar you donate will provide two people with clean water for up to five years.

Make waves through Venmo: donate here.

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Introducing Nearby Payments

· by Chris Maddern

Introducing Nearby Payments

We're really excited to launch nearby payments for Venmo today. Nearby payments let you do exactly what it sounds like -- pay other Venmo users who are close to you.

Read More →

Introducing the Recents Drawer for iOS

· by Chris Maddern

Introducing the Recents Drawer for iOS

As part of our iOS 7 redesign release, we added some new features, made lots of changes and removed a few features that we weren't totally convinced about too.

One feature that we removed, was the 'Recents Friends Bar', which allowed users to pay some of their friends with one tap from the main feed.

User Feedback
We received a lot of feedback about removing this.

I really liked my "favorites" at the bottom. Now it seems I have to search for the few people I pay every day? Am I missing something?
-Venmo User

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Designing the Drawer

· by Ayaka Nonaka

Designing the Drawer

This week, we launched an update to Venmo for iOS, introducing a drawer-based navigation pattern. You can download it from the App Store here.

Recently, side-drawer designs have been going out of vogue. Most notably Facebook, who spent a lot of effort educating the broad user population about the side-drawer metaphor, moved to using a tab bar based design citing increased engagement.

We spent a lot of time (and user testing) investigating if the side-drawer was right design for Venmo for iOS. We landed on a solid 'yes'.

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Introducing Our Status Page

· by James Turnbull

Introducing Our Status Page

Green lights make engineers (and users!) happy. Unfortunately failure is always lurking, especially when your user base grows at the exciting (and sometimes frightening!) rate Venmo’s does. During our outages in the past, we lacked a public facing way to inform our users about potential issues on the platform. In short, we lacked a status page. We're sorry for holding off on shipping one for so long, but the good news is, we finally have one in place.

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