RBI introduces offline payment via UPI. Here is how you will benefit


The Reserve Bank of India’s announcement on Thursday regarding the introduction of conversational payments and offline functionality in UPI Lite marks a pivotal step that is set to reshape India’s economic trajectory. The central bank raised the payment limit via UPI lite to 500 from 200.

“With the objective of harnessing new technologies for enhancing the digital payments experience for users, it is proposed to (i) enable “Conversational Payments” on UPI, which will enable users to engage in conversation with AI-powered systems to make payments; (ii) introduce offline payments on UPI using Near Field Communication (NFC) technology through ‘UPI-Lite’ on-device wallet; and (iii) enhance the transaction limit for small value digital payments in off-line mode from 200 to 500 within the overall limit of 2000 per payment instrument. These initiatives will further deepen the reach and use of digital payments in the country,” said RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das.

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The implementation of conversational payments using UPI is a significant concept. Users will be able to start and authorise transactions using natural language interactions, enabling the procedure for making payments more easy and convenient. 

Suren Goyal, partner, of RPS Group said another important feature is the addition of offline payments to UPI. This feature intends to facilitate flawless transactions even in places where internet availability is restricted or inconsistent. It would make certain that customers could begin payments offline and finish them whenever internet connectivity was restored, improving the accessibility and dependability of digital payments.

“Moreover, the Reserve Bank of India hopes to allow small-amount payments to be made offline using UPI. This strategy aims to promote digital transactions for small purchases even when consumers have no access to the internet. This programme adds to the larger objective of minimising cash reliance and promoting a cashless economy,” he added.

“The integration of conversational payments promises to elevate transactional convenience, enhancing the overall user experience. Simultaneously, the incorporation of near-field technology for offline payments addresses connectivity challenges, ensuring seamless transactions even in areas with limited network access. This move not only simplifies transactions but also ushers in a new era of accessibility and ease for individuals and businesses alike,” said Rajsri Rengan, India Head of Development, Banking and Payments, at FIS.

The Reserve Bank of India in its three-day monetary policy committee meeting unanimously decided to keep the repo rate unchanged at 6.5 per cent, something most financial markets had expected.


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Updated: 10 Aug 2023, 11:40 AM IST

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