The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) launched UPI Lite for feature phones on Tuesday, allowing Indian users to enable offline transactions for a small amount limit. The on-device wallet was launched by RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das alongside the unveiling of UPI on RuPay credit cards enabling of Bharat Bill Pay System (BBPS) for cross-border bill payments. To recall, UPI Lite’s debut in India was announced in March by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). As previously announced, the transactions may be allowed in offline mode, while crediting the account may need online connection for the initial phase.
The RBI governor Shaktikanta Das announced the launch of UPI Lite, which will allow the users to conduct online transactions for small amount limit in offline mode. The framework to facilitate small-value digital payments in offline mode was introduced in January, while the announcement about the debut of UPI Lite was made in March.
Users on UPI Lite will be able to use the on-device wallet to enable small-value transactions up to Rs. 200. However, as NPCI briefed earlier, the total limit of balance for the on-device wallet can be of up to Rs. 2,000. It is to be noted that UPI Lite will be giving tough competition to current online mobile wallets like Paytm and MobiKwik.
As previously announced, the initial phase may see debit payments in offline mode, while crediting the account will be possible only when online. However, all the UPI transactions may later transition in complete offline mode.
Most importantly, users can decide to disable UPI Lite services at any point of time from their UPI apps. In such case, the balance fund in the on-device wallet will be refunded to the user account in real time.
Apart from UPI Lite, the governor also unveiled the UPI on RuPay credit cards and enabling of Bharat Bill Pay System (BBPS) for cross-border bill payments. In the first phase, only Punjab National Bank, Union Bank of India, and Indian Bank will go live with UPI on RuPay credit cards via the Bhim app. Meanwhile, the BBPS enabled cross-border bill payments will go live for Federal Bank and UAE’s Lulu Exchange.