WhatsApp gets nod from NPCI for enabling in-app bigger payments

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Messaging giant’s app WhatsApp has been granted permission by the National Payment Corporation of India (NPCI) to develop in-app biggest payments and money transfer using UPI. 

Messaging app WhatsApp Pay has been operating in beta version here since its launch in February with limited exposure to users. The company started its P2P (peer to peer) payments on the UPI platform here but it is restricted to only 10 lakh users.

Speaking to the Times of India, MD and CEO, AP Hota NPCI confirmed that WhatsApp had received a nod from the payment institution. We have permitted multi bank partnership as WhatsApp did not want all transaction routed via one bank when payment loads are high. 

Hota said, Players like WhatsApp, Google are very large in size and thus partnering with multiple banks makes sense to ensure a smooth payment process. Google is waiting for the RBI’s approval to go live on UPI. Online merchants like Amazon and Uber are also in final stage of testing before enabling UPI.

The report also claims interest from the likes of Amazon and Uber who are also said to be in their final stages of testing before enabling customers to make payments using UPI.

WhatsApp CEO Chris Daniels had last week met IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad to discuss rising challenges like violence and lynching’s originating from forwards on the app.

Sources in the NPCI said the hot button issues surrounding the messaging platform have snowballed into an election matter and the Facebook Company may not get permission for a full-scale rollout of the payment service. 

Data localization is another hurdle that WhatsApp faces before it could expand the payments services. The RBI has asked all payments companies to store user’s data within India.

A report said, Despite the RBI mandate, most foreign players have not acted on this matter.