The Unified Payments Interface is meant to simplify transactions over smartphones in the country.
The national payments system launched in India this week. The Unified Payments Interface (UPI) is designed to let shoppers complete transactions using mobile phones. So far, the launch includes 21 particpating banks. Customers of those banks can already use the mobile payments services.
Among the banks include ICICI, Axis Bank, Yes Bank as well as eighteen others in India.
With UPI, customers can use the national mobile payments system to both send and receive money. All they need is a smartphone and an account with a participating bank. This system functions by assigning a “virtual identifier” to a user, instead of a person’s actual identity. The purpose is heightened mobile security. There are a number of different functions available by way of the platform. The functions include: bill payments, barcode based in-store purchase transactions, real-time peer to peer (P2P) transactions, delivery payments as well as several others.
The national mobile payments system was initially announced in April and has since been pilot tested.
The pilot initially consisted of bank employees. Now that the pilot is complete, availability has broadened substantially. Any Indian bank with more than 1,000 pilot customers and a success rate of 80 percent with 5,000 or more transactions can use the UPI mobile apps. They can offer their branded version of UPI mobile payments applications by way of the Google Play store. That way, it can be accessed by the general public in India.
By using those requirements for launching the mobile apps in the Google Play store, the goal was to incentivize participation in the pilot. That way, there would be a greater capability for improving the application before the nationwide launch. It is possible for existing mobile users to integrate their platforms into the Unified Payments Interface.
Some have predicted that this national mobile payments platform will be very helpful in boosting e-payment adoption in India. That opportunity has the potential to move the country forward in its progress toward financial inclusion. This is important as only just over half of Indians (53 percent) currently have bank accounts.