Decoded: How Unified Payments Interface (UPI) wants to make cash obsolete

The Unified Payment Interface (UPI), aims to make payments on mobiles easier.

UPI will support payments and funds transfer like IMPS (Immediate Payment Service) but rids you of the hassle of adding beneficiaries (friends, family or business owners) by depending solely on the IDs distributed by banks.

In doing so, the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) expects to migrate to a “less-cash and more digital society,” according to reports.

It already has 29 banks on its UPI network.

How does it work?

You get an email-like ID from the bank that serves as the username for transactions.

While making a payment for shopping, cabs or bills, besides the usual “netbanking” and “credit card” options, you will also see a UPI option.

On choosing the UPI method, you will be asked for your username — email-like ID — provided by your bank.

On providing the ID, all that’ll be left is to enter a MPIN.

MPIN is like an ATM pin and that you set up on the first UPIN transaction.

When will it be available and how?

Banks are testing pilot apps with UPI system and are expected to be rolled out in a couple of months. You’ll be asked to sign up for UPI once the bank app is updated with the feature.