- Google is coming up with a Paytm soundbox-like product for merchants
- Dubbed Soundpod by Google
- It is currently in pilot test and is available for select merchants
One thing that made Paytm stand out from the rest of the UPI apps on retailer desks is its soundbox.
The soundbox proved popular among merchants across India, especially in crowded shops where loud audio alerts made a massive difference for merchants. The merchants don’t need to check their phones for payments and wait for prompts from apps to see if the amount has been credited; the payment will be announced aloud by the box.
It took some time for others to copy Paytm’s offering, but PhonePe and BharatPe now offer their version of the soundbox.
A new report from TechCrunch says that Google is currently piloting its soundbox in India for merchants. It is named Soundpod by Google, and the company has started distributing soundboxes to select merchants in North India in locations including New Delhi.
Soundpod by Google comes with the usual QR code on the front, linked to the business’s or merchant’s bank account. On the back, like its competitors, Soundpod also has a small LCD showing the status and amount received by the QR code.
“We are experimenting with several different solutions to make digital payments more convenient and intuitive for users and merchants,” a Google spokesperson told IANS in a statement.
Google is facing tough competition from PhonePe, Paytm, and BharatPe in the merchant transaction space, all of which has their soundboxes now.
Soundpod by Google is available on pilot test for select merchants, and it is currently being distributed for free to merchants. PhonePe charges Rs 50 per month, while Paytm charges Rs 125 for similar offerings. It will be interesting to see how much Google will charge for the soundbox when it finally starts charging for the product.