The volume of transactions on the Unified Payments Interface (UPI) doubled to 76.96 million between September and October. The value of transactions in October was Rs 7,057 crore, National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) tweeted on Wednesday. The payment channel, which allows instant money transfer from one bank account to another, had clocked 30.98 million transactions worth Rs 5,325 crore in September and 16.8 million transactions worth Rs 4,156 crore in August. Volumes doubled between September and October as internet giant Google launched its UPI-enabled payments app Tez in India on September 18. Caesar Sengupta, vice-president for product management at Google, said that Tez garnered over 4.1 lakh active users within 20 hours of launch. UPI was launched in August 2016 with 21 banks and is currently being offered by 57 banks.
In recent months, Facebook-owned Whatsapp has shown interest in UPI, while Truecaller and Uber have already enabled UPI payments through their platforms. Amazon India is also in talks with NPCI to join the UPI ecosystem. UPI usage took off after the launch of the Bharat Interface for Money (BHIM) app in December 2016. Adoption of the payment channel is likely to increase over the next six months as non-bank wallets join the UPI ecosystem, following the Reserve Bank of India’s (RBI) guidelines to enable interoperability between all bank and non-bank wallets.
Half of all UPI payments by volume come from BHIM, followed by Flipkart-owned PhonePe, which accounts for 45% of UPI volumes. Bankers say that interoperability will help increase the contribution of bank-owned apps to overall UPI volumes. Parag Rao, head of cards and payments business at HDFC Bank, told FE, “As bank apps start getting distributed and registered, you’ll see the volumes coming up. The process of acquiring merchants, signing them on and integrating them is on.” The linking of offers, discounts and other incentives to UPI payments will also help adoption, he said.