Paytm to test face verification for payments in stores?

Paytm is testing face recognition tool for payments — Economic Times — “Paytm has begun testing a facial recognition tool that can unlock its payments application on a customer’s smartphone, company executives said. It also plans to extend this feature to allow customers to pay at merchant outlets with the blink of an eye… Paytm is testing the facial recognition feature on Google’s Android platform, and according to sources, will shortly roll it out through an app update. Offline payments through face recognition, however, would take longer, they said.”


Apple Pay hits launch hurdles in India

After Amazon and WhatsApp, Apple orders ‘stop payment’ — The Economic Times — “Silicon Valley giant Apple has shelved plans to launch a Unified Payments Interface-based payments platform in India after landing in a regulatory grey zone that has stalled the full rollouts of similar products by Amazon and WhatsApp as well. Apple put the brakes on introducing Apple Pay in the country despite holding discussions with a few leading banks and the National Payments Corporation of India, which manages the UPI platform, said two people with knowledge of the matter.”


Berkshire Hathaway invests in Indian mobile payments provider Paytm

Berkshire Hathaway confirms investment in Paytm parent One97 Communications — Economic Times — “Berkshire Hathaway has confirmed that it has made an investment in Paytm parent One97 Communications… ET had reported that Berkshire Hathaway is in talks to invest about Rs2,000-2,500 crore (US$285m-US$356m) in One97 Communications, that could value the company at $10bn. One97 Communications already counts China’s Alibaba Group Holdings and Japan’s Softbank among its major investors.”


WhatsApp tests mobile payments with one million consumers in India

Almost one million people ‘testing’ WhatsApp payments service in India — PTI/Economic Times — “Today, almost one million people are testing WhatsApp payments in India. The feedback has been very positive, and people enjoy the convenience of sending money as simple and securely as sending messages,” a WhatsApp spokesperson told PTI… WhatsApp is working closely with the Indian government, National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) and multiple banks, including payment service providers, to expand the feature to more people.”


Visa cuts transaction fees in India by up to 95%

Visa slashes fee on debit card payments, wants more small merchants on board — Economic Times — “In a note circulated among member banks recently, Visa said it would cut rates on debit card transactions by up to 95%… The largest quantum of decrease will apply to transactions under Rs 2,000 (US$29.57)… ‘Effectively, merchants and banks pay nothing for small value transactions. With this move, it should become more attractive for banks to deploy terminals at small shops and encourage debit card payments,’ said a senior banker.”


Google adds chat feature to Tez mobile payments app

Google integrates chat option on Tez payments app — Economic Times — “Google has integrated a chat option in the Google Tez application and is slowly rolling it out to its 13.5 million active users, taking the competition directly to WhatsApp… The payment application which runs on the Unified Payments Interface railroads will now allow consumers to not only send money to each other but also open up an option for conversation around the transaction.”




Google and Stripe eye a slice of UPI pie in India

Google and Stripe eye a slice of UPI pie in India — Economic Times — “Google is preparing to introduce its digital wallet, Android Pay, in India this year, anchoring the platform to the government-backed Unified Payments Interface as are other global companies including Stripe and WhatsApp… Google has started testing UPI on its Android Pay platform, said one person aware of the developments.”










Free insurance offer for mobile wallet

Indian consumers using the FreeCharge mobile wallet will have their wallet balance of up to Rs 20,000 (US$293) insured free of charge, Economic Times reports, as long as they are making transactions using the service at least once a month, through a partnership with Reliance General Insurance... More




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