According to a report by The Ken, Google is also planning to jump into the fintech market in India. Ever since the Government of India introduced the major reform of pushing cashless transactions, we have seen a big spike in mobile payments in India. Biggies like PayTM, Mobikwik, Freecharge are already trying to capture as much user base as they can. Talking about the specific UPI-based payments, the whole spectrum is being ruled by just two apps – PhonePe (45% Share) and BHIM (41% Share).
Now, Google is also jumping the bandwagon with the launch of Tez (a Hindi word meaning ‘fast’) – a cross platform payments app. Similar to other payment apps available in the market, the Tez will feature a digital wallet and support transactions through UPI (Unified Payment Interface). UPI is a government platform built and launched by National Payment Corporation of India in August last year. It is aimed to make bank to bank transfer more easy and robust eliminating the conventional IFSC and MMID methods. With UPI, your mobile number serves as your payment address and can receive the payment without revealing the bank account details. The report further claim that the Google Tez will be available as an Android app, web app for Chrome browser as well as for desktops. It is also likely to integrate other payments gateways for cross-platform compatibility and easier access.
Well, this is not the first time Google has ventured into a India-specific market. Earlier this year, it silently entered into online food ordering space in India with the launch of Areo. Even though the search giant already has a payment platform ‘Google Wallet’ available for global users, it seems like the company has specific focus on Indian fintech market.
Seeing the growth in payment space, Google is not alone in showing interest. Facebook-owned instant messaging app WhatsApp is also likely to integrate UPI-based payments into its app. According to a report, WhatsApp is planning to enter into digital payments with the launch of peer-to-peer payment system in India. Even the caller ID service Truecaller has also forayed into UPI-based payment platform back in March which lets you send and request money from your contacts.
It would be interesting to see how the payment space evolves once the trio of Google, WhatsApp and PayTM directly competes with each other. As of now, WhatsApp is ruling the instant messaging market with 200 million active users in India and being far ahead of Google’s Allo. Whereas PayTM is ruling the market of digital payments. Soon, PayTM will also integrate instant messaging into its platform and will be directly competing against WhatsApp.