Before the covid-19-induced lockdown, Bipin Preet Singh, founder and chief executive officer of MobiKwik payments app, had ordered cleaning services. He decided to pay for it via Unified Payments Interface (UPI). When asked for the UPI ID, the cleaning services person was surprised and said that he was not aware of it. He asked Singh to pay using the same app he uses.
The incident made Singh realize that many users were still not aware of how UPI works. “The platform is supposed to be interoperable. But it was working like a closed ecosystem where many users didn’t know how to send or receive money on different payment apps," said Singh. That’s when Singh decided to work on a solution.
On Thursday, MobiKwik introduced a new feature in UPI aimed at simplifying transactions. Here’s how it works.
An individual has to use MobiKwik app just once initially to sign up and set up UPI on it. Whenever he or she needs to receive payment from someone via UPI, the user needs to open a browser and type in mpay.me/<mobile number>. Instantly, a link is generated on the website, which is mpay.me/9XXXXXXXX.
To receive payment, the user can share the link via messenger, text message, email, and so on. The payee clicks on the link and a pop-up appears asking to select one of the UPI apps on the phone to make the payment.
Known as the payment link service, the feature can make it easier for a user to initiate the transaction, even though he or she may not be aware of the UPI features. “With the link, the user has its own payment gateway not restricted to any app," said Singh.
According to Singh, there will more enhancements that the company will add to this feature. “As of now, the link has the registered mobile number of the user. We would allow customization of the link. Instead of the number, it can be anything else that the person would prefer. Like we see verified profile on social media, we could also do the same so that users know that the request is from a genuine source," said Singh.
Payment link service is a common feature in many international wallets. Introducing it on the UPI platform makes transacting much easier.