At present, Paytm, Google Pay and PhonePe are some of the major players in the digital payment market.
WhatsApp has been working on a pilot model with selected users since 2018. (Reuters file photo)
The wait is over for messaging giant WhatsApp. In a major development that may significantly change the highly-competitive digital payment market in India, WhatsApp has finally been allowed to roll out the UPI services in the country. According to a press release issued by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), WhatsApp will be allowed to go ‘live’ with the payment model in a ‘graded manner.’ At present, Paytm, Google Pay, and PhonePe are some of the major players in the digital payment market. The Thursday announcement ends the two-year-long wait of WhatsApp, which has been working on a pilot model with selected users since 2018.
NPCI said that WhatsApp can expand its UPI userbase in a graded manner starting with a maximum registered user base of twenty million in UPI. It is to be noted that today’s decision to allow Whatsapp to go live with the UPI facility has come soon after NPCI issued a cap of 30 percent of the total volume of transactions processed in UPI, applicable to all third-party app providers (TPAPs) from 1 January 2021. NPCI said that the move will help to address the risks and protect the UPI ecosystem as it further scales up.
The cap of 30 per cent will be calculated on the basis of the total volume of transactions processed in UPI during the preceding three months and the existing Third-Party App Providers (TPAPs) exceeding the specified cap will have a period of two years from January 2021, to comply with the same in a phased manner. Meanwhile, WhatsApp Pay has already joined nearly 10 lakh users during its trial and has tied up with ICICI Bank for its payment services. Including WhatsApp, there are 21 TPAPs registered on NPCI. These include Amazon Pay, Bajaj Finserv Direct Ltd, CoinTab, Cred, My FAStag, Google Pay, PhonePe, Samsung Pay, TrueCaller, etc.