PayMate, India’s leading mobile payments company, has successfully launched an innovative application for mobile fund transfers that is now powering the Inter Bank Mobile Payment Service (IMPS) of three leading banks in the country. Currently live at Syndicate Bank, Lakshmi Vilas Bank and South Indian Bank, PayMate’s application is a shot in the arm to Inter Bank Mobile Payment Services in the country.
The IMPS facility was launched with much fanfare in November 2010, under the aegis of the National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI). It promised an instant interbank electronic fund transfer service that customers could conveniently access using their mobile phones. However, although the facility is being offered by over 20 banks across the country, the adoption rate has been low. Industry analysts have attributed this to the fact that the service in its present format is custom-made for smartphone users who can download an application from their respective banks and use it to make a fund transfer. Users with basic phones have the option of transferring funds via an SMS which limits the transaction value. PayMate’s IMPS application add to these two modes of funds transfer with a third option that is a hybrid SMS-IVR based solution that allows even a basic phone user to transfer funds up to Rs 50,000/-. With PayMate powering IMPS services of 3 banks and with at least 5 additional banks in the pre-launch phase, PayMate is the single largest technology solution provider to banks for IMPS.
Commenting on the launch of the application, Ajay Adiseshann, Founder and Managing Director, PayMate says, “Being a leader and an innovator in the mobile payments space, new opportunities always excite us. IMPS services would be another such service we would like to exploit and which layers over the foundation we have already laid over the last 5 years.”
P.R. Somasundaram, CEO and MD of Lakshmi Vilas Bank said: “We have partnered with Paymate for the mobile application. We will be ahead of the queue in launching such technology driven payment solutions. We believe that such transaction platforms will define banking services more so as we focus on financial inclusion as a key business opportunity.”
A spokesperson from Syndicate Bank, commenting on the service, said “This innovative solution from Paymate will allow customers to use their mobile for transactions anytime, anywhere.”
Currently, the Reserve Bank of India has allowed 39 banks to launch mobile banking services and recently raised the limit for the amount which can be paid through mobile phones to Rs 50,000. As per the latest report released by Telecom Regulatory Authoority of India (TRAI), India has 538.38 million urban subscribers while 267.74 million rural subscribers. With just 19-20% of urban subscribers using smartphones, there is an urgent need to reach out to other subscribers and enable them to use IMPS and PayMate’s application will put IMPS within the reach of millions.