India's Amazing Immediate Mobile Payment Service gathers Momentum

Interbank Mobile Payment Service (IMPS) is gaining popularity in India. Most of the major banks are extending this service to account holders to access accounts and transfer funds using mobile phones. According to NPCI (National Payments Corporation of India), IMPS witnessed a 22% growth in taking place between August and September 2014. There was also a 6% increase in total number of Mobile Money IDs (MMID) issued during that period.

The following illustration shows the growth of IMPS in the past year in terms of transactions made and amount transacted:

Source: NPCI

IMPS can be used for both customer to customer transfers and merchant transfers through a seven digit number which is actually the MMID and also a Mobile Banking Personal Identification Number (MPIN). A mobile payment transfer is facilitated when the transferor has fed in the receiver’s mobile number, MMID and the value to be to be transferred along with the MPIN details. Post transfer, an SMS confirms the transaction. The daily limit for such transactions is set at INR 50,000.

As cited by Ram Rastogi, Head-IMPS at NPCI, IMPS is committed to reach the 10 million transactions per month mark by January 2015. He portrays IMPS as a 24X7, real time, cost effective, mobile based, person to person (P2P) remittance solution. IMPS has also evolved as a multi-channel, multi-dimensional remittance platform capable of processing P2P and P2M (Person to Merchant) remittance/payments initiated from Mobile, Internet, ATM as well as branch channels.

64 banks have so far signed up for IMPS. Some prominent banks include HSBC, ICICI, HDFC, IDBI and some members of the State Bank Group as well. IMPS provides interoperability amongst leading Indian banks covering 98% of banking customers and Prepaid Card Issuers ( including Mobile Wallets of Telecom Service Providers like Airtel Money, M –pesa, M-Rupee). It also connects other non-telco, non-bank PPIs like Oxigen, ITZ Cash, GI Cash, UAE Exchange, Muthoot, Money on Mobile. The following illustration gives a clearer picture on the non-banking players involved in IMPS:

Source: NPCI

In India, IMPS is showing tremendous growth in numbers with players from different domains of the payments space now adopting the service. The payments ecosystem in India is indeed fortunate to have an amazing service like IMPS.