What is Unified Payments Interface (UPI)?

  • Unified Payments Interface (UPI) is a system that powers multiple bank accounts into a single mobile application of any participating bank. The interface has been developed by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).
  • UPI is a payment system that allows money transfer between any two bank accounts by using a smartphone.
  • UPI allows a customer to pay directly from a bank account to different merchants, both online and offline, without the hassle of typing credit card details, IFSC code, or net banking/wallet passwords.
    • It merges several banking features, seamless fund routing & merchant payments into one hood.
  • It was launched in April 2016 and today, the platform has emerged as a popular choice among users for sending and receiving money.
  • It also caters to the “Peer to Peer” collect request which can be scheduled and paid as per requirement and convenience.
  • In 2018, an upgraded version of UPI 2.0, was launched by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).

Key features of UPI:

  • Invoice in the inbox: This feature is designed for customers to check the invoice sent by the merchant prior to making payment. It will help customers to view and verify the credentials and check whether it has come from the right merchant or not.
  • One-time mandate: UPI Mandate, which means customers including both merchants and individual users can pre-authorize a transaction and pay at a later date, can be created and executed instantly. On the date of actual purchase, the amount will be deducted and received by the merchant/individual user.
  • Linking of overdraft account: In addition to current and savings accounts, customers can link their overdraft account to UPI.
  • Signed intent and QR: This feature helps customers to check the authenticity of merchants while scanning QR or quick response code. It notifies the user with information to ascertain whether the merchant is a verified UPI merchant or not. This provides additional security. Customers will be informed in case the receiver is not secured by way of notifications.

About National Payments Corporation of India(NPCI):

  • NPCI is an umbrella organisation for operating retail payments and settlement systems in India.
  • It is an initiative of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) under the provisions of the Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007 for creating a robust Payment and Settlement Infrastructure in India.
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