Reserve Bank of India Governor Shaktikanta Das, during the Global Fintech Fest 2023 recently, launched another set of new digital offerings like Credit Line on UPI, UPI LITE X, and Tap & Pay, Hello! UPI - Conversational Payments on UPI, BillPay Connect - Conversational Bill Payments. These features will allow people to use UPI in different forms to make payments process easier. Here’s an explainer on these offerings, which are aimed at transforming the online payments industry in India.

Hello! UPI

Conversational UPI payments and conversational bill payments are facilitated by an AI-enabled system, which is expected to deepen digital payments usage in the country. Users can simply give voice commands to transfer funds and input a UPI PIN to complete the transaction. NPCI has partnered with the Bhashini program – AI4Bharat at IIT Madras, to co-develop Hindi and English payment language models. Hello! UPI or "conversational payments" on UPI will enable people to make "voice-enabled" UPI payments via UPI apps, telecom calls, and IoT devices in Hindi and English, and will soon be available in several other regional languages. The expansion will broaden payment accessibility for most Indians who are fluent in native languages.

BillPay Connect

For bill payments via UPI, with the BillPay Connect or "conversational bill payments" feature, people can fetch and pay their bills by sending a simple ‘Hi’ on the messaging app. Customers, without smartphones or immediate mobile data access, will also be able to pay bills by giving a missed call. Customers will receive an immediate call back for verification and payment authorisation. The feature also offers a 'Voice Assisted Bill Payments' facility. Customers can fetch and pay bills through voice commands on their smart home devices and get instant voice confirmation.

Credit Line on UPI

The new offering enables pre-sanctioned credit lines from banks via UPI. It is aimed at easing customer access to credit, making it more streamlined and a part of the digital banking ecosystem. This will make availing, connecting, and utilising credit lines easier. It'll involve features like the linkage of pre-sanctioned credit lines, the creation of digital credit products by banks, the establishment of interest-free credit periods and corresponding interest rates, defined schedule of charges, customer engagement channels for credit sanction requests, and the ability to link various pre-sanctioned credit lines via UPI-enabled apps for transactions. All UPI apps, including bank and third-party apps, will be empowered to discover and link credit lines on UPI, as well as provide end-to-end customer lifecycle services.

UPI LITE X and Tap & Pay

After the success of UPI LITE, the RBI governor launched UPI LITE X for "Offline" payments. With this, users can send and receive money while being completely offline, allowing transactions even in areas with poor connectivity. UPI LITE X will be accessible to anyone with a compatible device that supports Near Field Communication (NFC). UPI LITE payments are also claimed to be faster as they require less time to process the transaction. To enhance QR code and Near Field Communication (NFC) technology adoption, the RBI has also introduced UPI Tap & Pay, which is an addition to the conventional scan and pay method. So users can now simply tap NFC-enabled QR codes for payments.

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