Whatsapp is one of the best and fastest instant messaging service in India. Whatsapp was Cofounded by Brian Acton and Jan Koum in 2009. It has almost over 200 million users worldwide. Taking advantage of this vast amount of users and to increase capitalisation Whatsapp is now planning to launch it’s very own digital payment service, as per report by the Ken (Paywall). It is going to be a very tough fight now as India tops in using whatsapp as compared to other countries. Whatsapp as we know has been took over by Facebook recently is planning to move from person to person payment service within few months in India. The country’s digital economy is in growth right now as PM “Narendra Modi” took 86% of country’s physical currency out of circulation by banning 500rs and 1000rs notes late last year.
For a country like India digital payment service is a new experience and all companies are trying hard to step up their game. India is also experiencing a budding growth in mobile Payment service. Soon after this launch it’s going to be a very serious competition with Paytm as it is the only sole payment processing service which tops in India as it has been backed up by Alibaba which has invested more than $690 million in this venture. As per sources Paytm has covered about 200 million users in prepaid digital payment wallet due to demonetisation by February. By the End of March 2017, the famous phone number revealing App Truecaller has crossed 150 million user mark has started a mobile payment service in India based on Unified Payment Service ( UPI ) platform which in turn will go against Paytm. Soon the combined power of Whatsapp and Truecaller will cause serious threats to stability maintained by Paytm.
In February 2017, Founder Brian Acton himself conveyed that Whatsapp is in early stages of examining it’s digital payments product in India for which he had already been in talks with the Indian government. Job description for Whatsapp digital transaction system says the individuals should be aware with India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) which allows money to be transferred digitally between bank accounts and other online services.
Whatsapp is currently in no mood to talk about its plan for payments system in India however said that it is searching ways to support government’s “Digital India” drive. Whatsapp could be the best platform into India’s mobile money market while In the U.S. Facebook added payment feature to its Messenger app sometimes back and thus now is trailing this feature for Whatsapp. Facebook owned App – Whatsapp’s Spoke person said that Whatsapp is keenly interested in contributing more towards visualization for digital commerce platform in India. With the rise in users of mobile phone internet here with the help of company like Reliance Jio which made 4g usage so cheap so that it can be used by almost every person which made India top the list of internet users world-wide from 150th position to 1st.
UPI, Whatsapp and India stack
Whatsapp has decided to go with the UPI way for mobile payment system instead of using other famous digital wallets. UPI or Unified Payments Service is mainly a service that helps to transfer money between two persons/parties such as friends, merchants, delivery boys and other by one touch technique using unique virtual address on a phone. When a receiver is added to that address than mobile PIN confirmation is required to complete the transaction within seconds which is totally secure. In 2016 RBI Governor “Raghuram Rajan” disclosed this UPI based mobile payment application (BHIM) which was launched to make peer-to-peer transactions easy thus, Whatsapp wants to modernize payments in India similar to what WeChat has done in China.
In 2016, many start-ups launched mobile apps on UPI base like Razorpay, Flipkart owned wallet PhonePe and trupay. MobiKwik also partnered with ICICI to make easy payments through UPI. Even FreeCharge launched a Chat and Pay app that allows social payments. Recently in 2017, the NPCI introduced Bharat QR Code mandated by government in alliance with Visa and MasterCard to provide digital transactions among consumers without swiping their cards.
As per sources Whatsapp will be using UPI for payment processing so it will make user’s data very easy available while using the services due to it’s already established network in India. The only government UPI India has is BHIM which uses person’s thumb impression to make payment. It uses thumb impression as a unique attribute to process payment which is totally unique in it’s own way. Other payment processing systems like Paytm, freecharge etc will soon have to change their technology which they use to transfer payment as it’s not as easy as BHIM does it. BHIM stands for Bharat interface for money was developed by a 27 old Nikhil Kumar with his teammates and has already witnessed over 15 million downloads. It is developed under the supervision on NPCI (National Payments Corporation of India) and was launched on December 30, 2016. It has been said that BHIM was developed within a time period of 25 days which is a remarkable achievement in it’s own way.
Whatsapp as we know is as famous as Facebook for any person in our country. People cannot take their hands off this service anytime as it’s fee and the only of it’s kind to provide such fast service. So we can now imagine if such a famous Social media service if launches a digital payment service, what kind of impact will it make on the payment processing system of this country. If this service becomes a hit then Facebook will soon become an integral part of everyone’s life as everyone needs simple and fast payment processing system fo day to day transactions which becomes easy for Whatsapp due to it’s already formed user base. It is believed that the competition in mobile payment segment will be very interesting and tough challenges will be faced by the companies’ like Whatsapp, Paytm, Truecaller and more to make their mark in Indian economy. We give all the thumbs up to Whatsapp for their launch.