Mumbai: Country's third largest private sector lender Axis Bank on August 5 said it is ready with a Unified Payments Interface (UPI) app, while it also announced a tie-up with digital payments company Freecharge for it.
"UPI is yet to become operational, but we are ready with our application and will have a tie-up with Freecharge right from the start for UPI-based payments," its head of cards and payments, Sangram Singh said.
He said as per UPI's architecture, the bank's application, called Axis Pay App, can be used by any other bank's customer. Stating that the key difference between the soon-to-be-introduced UPI and the existing mobile banking is simplicity, Singh said one can do banking transactions using only a single 'Virtual Payment Address' (VPA).
He said while transferring money to an account, the sender will not be forced to feed the slew of details like the account number and bank's IFSC Code, but can transact using only the VPA.
When asked about the business benefit for Axis Bank for facilitating other bank customers' transactions, he said rather than individual gains, lenders have to first increase the size of the electronics payments first which accounted for only up to seven per cent of payment transactions.
"Cash still continues to account a bulk of focus, which has to go down and UPI will be a big step to get it down," he said.
Singh said he expects the NPCI to go live with UPI in next few days and added Axis Bank will be among the over dozen banks which will go live on it as part of the first phase of the launch.
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 and merchant payments into one hood.
It was launched by RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan along with National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) advisor Nandan Nilekani in April this year....