According to the head of the South Asian nation’s payments network, India’s rapidly expanding market for digital payments is poised to get more crowded as the country races to catch China to squeezing out the use of cash, which means Indians will continue to face bewildering array of payments apps provided by Facebook Inc., Google, Amazon.com Inc. and many other apps, in contrast to China where two home-grown technology giants dominate the market.
The Unified Payments Interface managed by NPCI allows any firm to use an infrastructure linking all the nation’s banks to create new digital payments services quickly and cheaply. It was created three years ago as part of a drive to reduce the use of cash and bring more Indians into the financial system.
However, Facebook’s WhatsApp payment service remains in beta mode, pending government approvals. Already, 87 apps offered by Google, PayTM and other third parties, as well as many of the nation’s lenders.