Dozens of users noticed a "Payment and Shipping" function in the settings for Twitter's Android app this week, but the function doesn't appear to do anything. Instead, it simply sits under all the other tools available to the user:
Huh. A 'Payment and Shipping' tab was just added to my Twitter app. Currently does nothing when tapped. pic.twitter.com/chbUEJBdm5— Daniel Bader (@journeydan) August 4, 2014
Twitter has been rumored to be pursuing online retail for a while, and the menu option isn't the first mysteriously dormant function to have raised eyebrows. In June, Re/Code reported some tweets from retail sites like Fancy were sporting a "buy now" button that similarly did nothing but appeared for some users.
The tech site also obtained documents in January showing plans for e-commerce, and found evidence possibly pointing to partnerships between Twitter and companies like Stripe, which processes credit card payments.
Whatever the case, e-commerce has proven to be a robust market for social media companies to tap into: eMarketer has estimated that $304 billion will be spent on online retail this year. U.S. retailers are projected to spend $11.2 billion on digital ads, with 37 percent of those budgets targeting mobile, an area Twitter has dominated in the past.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.