BHIM, Other Govt-Backed Apps To Boost Digital Payments

by Swaminathan B    Jan 02, 2017

GovtBacked Apps May Boost Digital Payments Shift

Post-Demonetization, the need for going cashless has hit the masses. With large number of transaction failure and subsequently concerns being raised over the security system, people are seeking for a ‘secured’ digital wallet. While almost every bank in India has created an application for digital payments through mobile wallets, PM Narendra Modi has launched a Unified Payments Interface (UPI) based mobile payment  app at the Digi Dhan Mela camp in Delhi, as he stated that now…‘Your Thumb Can be Your Bank.’

The BHIM app

Called ‘BHIM’ which stands for Bharat Interface for Money, the app is developed by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) and is available for Android smartphones via Google Play Store. BHIM app will let you send and receive money to other non-UPI accounts or addresses.

The newly announced Aadhaar Payment App for merchants is said to eradicate the need for payment machines for cashless transactions where a merchant would need is an Android smartphone to run a cashless business. As per the source, merchants would need to download the Aadhaar Cashless merchant app and connect to a biometric reader, one that is currently on sale for Rs 2,000.

A merchant gets onboard IDFC bank through an e-KYC process and gets a link on a smartphone within the hour. The application can only be downloaded through that link, and is connected to an Aadhaar biometric reader certified by the Standardization Testing and Quality Certification (STQC). Additionally, there’s the option of scanning a QR code and making a direct payment. Users can create their own QR code for a certain fixed amount of money, and then the merchant can scan it and the deduction will be made.

The application is meant to allow the citizens from remote and rural areas to make cashless transactions. Consumers only need an Aadhaar card linked to a bank account. There is no need for debit cards, credit cards, or even a smartphone.

Here are a few more financial apps that are accelerating the digital payment shift.

IRCTC Mobile Wallet

IRCTC, the agency for ticketing and catering of the Indian railways is the largest e-commerce site in South-Asia. IRCTC, which started with 29 bookings a day in 2002, is currently booking 1.45 million tickets a day.

Even though the mobile wallet was introduced years ago, the spur among the customers on the digital money started only in 2016. During the free month-long registration period (May 16- June 15, 2016), the total number of registrations for e-wallet stood at 10,673 with an average of 344 registrations a day. The e-wallet facility ensures an alternative and easy payment option for e-ticketing. The success rate of booking tickets through IRCTC e-wallet has been more than 99 per cent.

IRCTC’s e-wallet has several advantages as compared to other payment options on its website. It can be topped up in the multiple of Rs 100 up to a maximum of Rs 10,000. This payment instrument is cheaper and charges only Rs 5 per transaction.

Also, payment through the e-wallet can be made round the clock and is highly secured through a Two-Factor Authentication: transaction password and OTP on registered mobile at the time of payment.

‘State Bank MobiCash’

‘State Bank MobiCash’, the outcome of the joint-effort by the SBI and BSNL will be available Pan-India from Dec 31,2016. The latest mobile wallet is initially made available in Punjab, Rajasthan, Haryana and Bihar.  “State Bank MobiCash” will not only works with smartphone but with normal feature phone also. The special feature of MobiCash is that users can deposit cash with BSNL retail outlets and can also withdraw cash from his/her account. This feature is unique with MobiCash and is not available with any of the Mobile wallets available in India at present.

“Mobicash” provides services to all the sections of our mobile users in the country, be it a smartphone user or a basic feature phone user. This mobile Wallet is brought to market jointly by SBI, BSNL and its Technology partner Triotech Solutions. This will bridge the gap between the Urban and Rural market and fulfill the aspirations across all the sections of our society and move our country towards a Cashless world.”

The USP of this wallet is that it has both customer initiated  and  retailer assisted features for usage of Wallet, backed by huge base of more than six lakhs  retailers  of BSNL who will act as BSNL Customer Service Points (CSPs) to bring Bank closer to the end User.