Here’s how Twitter’s new pay-by-tweet service works in France

Above: BPCE of France unveiled the ability to pay with Twitter using the bank’s S-Money app.

In a splashy press conference in Paris on Tuesday, the banking giant Groupe BPCE unveiled the details of its new service that lets users send money using a single Tweet.

Basically, starting today, anyone with a French bank account and Twitter can start using the service for free. And in fact, many have.

Here’s how it works:

First, you have to download BPCE’s S-Money App from the the iTunes store or Google Play store. Note that both have been update to versions that include the pay-by-tweet feature.

Next, fill in your credit card information. Then connect the app to your Twitter account. That’s it.

The key from there is tweeting using the exact symbols and words required:

Some people who spelled out “euros,” for instance, had their payments rejected.

There are a couple of important limitations. For now, uses can send a maximum of €250 ($317.85) to individuals, and €500 ($635.70) to associations that are doing some kind of campaign or fundraising.

The other thing to remember is that these tweets are public, not direct messages. So, you have to think about what kind of payments you want the world to know you’re making.

Officials at BPCE and Twitter say this could be an advantage for non-profits and public service campaigns. If everyone in your feed is suddenly tweeting that they are giving $5 or $10 to a worthy cause, like the Campaign to Prevent Cats From Eating Twinkies, then there’s the chance the donations could go viral. After all, if you have this all hooked up, sending a tweet just takes a few seconds.

What wasn’t clear from the press conference is what, if any, financial relationship the bank has with Twitter. We’ve got an email into Twitter to see if they will discuss details and will update if there is more information.

Also, BPCE officials noted that while they are working with Twitter, it is not necessarily an exclusive arrangement. So, perhaps other social networks like Facebook could still jump in to forge a partnership of some kind.

For those who speak a little French, here’s the BPCE video explaining the service:

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