Want to pay money to someone but don't know their bank details? Use their Twitter name

The Pingit app, which allows you to send and receive money from your phone without fiddly account numbers and sort codes, is adding payment to Twitter handles.

Mobile payments let you split a restaurant bill, pay a small business or lend a friend a few quid from your phone. Shutterstock

Want to pay someone some of your hard-earned, but don't have their account number or sort code to hand? Now all you need to know is their Twitter name and you can bung 'em the cash through the Pingit app.

Pingit allows you pay a friend or small business without needing their bank details or other personal details, by simply entering their phone number. The option to pay Twitter users will be added to the Pingit app, backed by Barclays bank, on 10 March.

Paying a Twitter user is as simple as logging into Pingit and entering the Twitter handle of the person you want to pay. The payment then goes through instantly, with no transaction fee for payments between individuals. Both payee and payer need to have their Twitter handles registered with Pingit, and you can tweet the recipient once the payment has gone through.

Launched in 2012, Pingit is an app that allows you to send money with your mobile without knowing the other person's bank details. Although Barclays is behind the app, anyone can use it whether you're a Barclays customer or not; all you need is a UK bank account and UK mobile phone number.

If you're sending money to a friend or any individual all you need is their phone number, while small businesses can get a QR code for customers to scan. There's a calculator built in so you can, for example, settle up a restaurant bill. Payments are logged with a text message and can be tracked in the app.

To receive your money, the person on the other end needs to either have the Pingit app installed or be registered for the Paym mobile payment service. If they have neither then the money stays in your account and they get a text telling them about the payment, whereupon they have five days to install Pingit. Your money stays where it is until they do.

Update 2.15pm: Added clarification that both parties have to register their Twitter handle with Pingit.

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