The second largest private sector lender HDFC Bank claimed to have done a global first by launching a mobile phone application that will aggregate merchants’ applications and allow users to transfer funds, shop, pay utility bills, book tickets and recharge phones.
“Our investors told us that banking will become obsolete and will be taken over by intermediaries. If they (intermediaries) were to do so sitting over my existing systems, why not have the capabilities myself as part of the digital banking?” managing director Aditya Puri said while launching the application.
Puri said he visited Silicon Valley and met technology companies over three days last November to understand what they are doing. Accordingly, the bank developed Payzapp, which will help its customers do multiple transactions.
Unlike prepaid wallets launched by its competition or non-bank companies, a customer’s debit or credit card will be connected to the application and multiple transactions can be carried out on the same.
A customer can transfer funds, recharge mobiles, pay bills, do travel bookings, book movie tickets; and order food, grocery and music using the specially created app, which can be downloaded from the Google Play Store from June 15.
A customer can also apply for loans, purchase insurance and the bank will also give investment advice through it.
The customer can do transactions and for payment, the amount will be debited directly from her credit or debit card. In a bid to make it more convenient, the bank has done away with the need to key in the one-time password for such transactions.
Bank’s senior executive vice-president Parag Rao said there are three levels of security, including device mapping and matching of the card number with the registered mobile number, which takes place at the backend to carry out a transaction.
The product is fully compliant with RBI’s two factor authentication and has also been cleared by the regulator, he said. The bank, however, did not disclose the investment which it has done for the product.
At present, there are over 15 large merchants like Cleartrip, Flipkart, PVR, Bookmyshow, Indigo etc that have already tied up with the bank for Payzapp and it is targeting to take the total number of merchants to 10,000 in 45 days.
In the next four months, customers will also be able to use the mobile phones to execute purchases at physical locations using the QR codes and near field communication technologies, Rao said.
Eventually, it plans to make it possible for customers of other banks and financial companies to also register on the bank, Rao said, adding that there is technology which makes this possible at present.
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