Unified Payment Interface: Now, bank through your smartphone; here is how it works

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Updated: April 12, 2016 11:36:03 AM

Unified Payments interface is a channel that powers multiple bank accounts into a single mobile application (of any bank) of a participating bank, merging several banking features, seamless fund routing & merchant payments into one hood.

UPI-launch660Unified Payments Interface was launched by Reserve Bank Governor Raghuram Rajan on Monday, April 11, 2016 along with Nandan Nilekani, advisor to NPCI.

With the launch of Unified Payments Interface (UPI) by Reserve Bank of India Governor Raghuram Rajan on Monday, your smartphone will work as a payment bank.

What is Unified Payments interface
Unified Payments interface (UPI) is a channel that powers multiple bank accounts into a single mobile application (of any bank) of a participating bank, merging several banking features, seamless fund routing & merchant payments into one hood. It also caters to the Peer to Peer collect request which can be scheduled and paid as per requirement and convenience.

It also provides an option for scheduling push and pull transactions for various purposes like sharing bills among peers.

One can use UPI app instead of paying cash on delivery on receipt of product from online shopping websites and can perform expenses like paying utility bills, over the counter payments, barcode (scan and pay) based payments, donations, school fees and other such unique and innovative use cases.

The interface is the advanced version of NPCI’s Immediate Payment Service (IMPS) which is a 24*7*365 funds transfer service.

How it works
UPI will offer a facility to identify a bank customer with an email-like virtual address. It will allow a customer to have multiple virtual addresses for multiple accounts in various banks. In order to ensure privacy of customer’s data,
there is no account number mapper anywhere other than the customer’s own bank. This allows the customer to freely share the financial address with others. A customer can also decide to use the mobile number as the name instead of the short name for the virtual address like 1234567890@sbi.

UPIs unique features

– Single click 2-Factor authentication for subsequent transactions
-‘Virtual address’ as a payment identifier for sending to & Collecting money from
– Bill splitting among friends
– Best answer to Cash on Delivery hassle, running to nearest ATM or rendering exact amount
– Merchant Payment with Single App or In-App Payments
– Schedule, PUSH and PULL Payments for various purposes
– Utility Bill Payments, Over the Counter Payments, Barcode (Scan and Pay) based payments
– Donations, Collections, Disbursements Scalable

Benefits for banks:
– Single click 2-Factor authentication for subsequent transactions
– Universal APP for transaction
– Leveraging existing infrastructure
– Security (on other bank app it uses NPCI library to securely capture credentials)
– Payment basis Single/ Unique Identifier
– Enable seamless merchant transactions

Benefits for end customers:
– Round the clock availability
– Single APP for accessing different bank accounts
– Use of Virtual ID is more secure, no credential sharing
– Faster checkout
– No timeout scenario

Benefits for merchants:
– Seamless fund collection from customers – single identifiers
– No risk of storing customer’s virtual address like in Cards
– Suitable for e-Com & m-Com
– Resolves the COD collection problem
– Single click 2FA facility to the customer – seamless Pull
– In-App Payments (IAP)

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