HDFC Bank, Movida partner for multiple m-commerce transactions

by CXOtoday Staff    Feb 22, 2012

Customers of the bank can now pay bills, top up prepaid airtime and buy tickets from their mobile phone.

HDFC Bank signed an agreement with Movida, a mobile payments joint venture backed by Visa and Monitise, to introduce a first of its kind mobile payment service in India.

The new service allows HDFC Bank customers to pay bills, top up prepaid airtime and buy tickets from their mobile phone and is designed to operate across all mobile networks using any Visa or non-Visa branded payment account.

It can be used by any mobile subscriber, anywhere and accessed by even the most basic mobile phone.

“The partnership with Movida is a crucial step whereby we will enable our customers to carry out multiple mobile commerce transactions from the most basic handsets,” said Rahul Bhagat, Head-Retail Liabilities, Marketing & Direct Banking Channels, HDFC Bank.

The new service uses menu-based Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) mobile technology. USSD is a protocol used by GSM cellular telephones to communicate with the service provider’s computers.

After linking their HDFC Bank Visa or non-Visa payment card to their mobile phone number, cardholders can access the service via USSD over Movida’s secure connection.

“This is a service designed for Indians. As we rollout the service to other banks more people will be able to benefit from mobile payments. This service is going to drastically reduce the time and energy Indians waste every day waiting to pay bills,” said Naushad Contractor, Movida’s President and head of the Monitise and Visa joint venture in India.

The system encompasses various security measures to maintain account integrity, including a unique PIN number set up on the phone to access the account information. Only the user’s bank-registered phone can be connected to the service.

“This technology will be a game changer the way the iPhone was for mobile phones,” said Contractor

The service is initially being offered to a select number of valued customers before being rolled out across the country later in the year.

In November last year, HDFC partnered with telecom service provider Vodafone India to launch m-paisa, a mobile banking service in Rajasthan to enable millions of unbanked Indians leverage use of mobile phones for banking transactions.