In a move that is expected to widen the platform’s merchant base, Indian mobile payments giant Paytm has now made it workable for small retailers to acknowledge installments made through credit and debit cards without a swipe or point-of-sale machine.
"Paytm has updated its app to launch India's first APP POS, which will democratise digital payments. With this, any shopkeeper who has a smartphone and mobile internet, can accept debit and credit card payments from customers," Vijay Shekhar Sharma, Founder and CEO - Paytm said.
The app will be particularly useful for small shopkeepers without card swiping machines, ensuring they do not lose out on business amid the ongoing cash crunch following demonetisation.
Explaining the new facility on its app, Paytm said that under 'Accept Payment' icon, small shopkeepers and businesses can self-declare their details and provide bank account details to start receiving payments instantly up to Rs 50,000 a month as stipulated by RBI.
The shopkeeper will generate a bill for the item sold and hand over the phone to the customer for entering card details. The details, entered by the customer, will not reside on the app itself, but on the bank's website, making the process secure, Paytm said.
This comes at a time when scrapping of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes has forced consumers to adopt digital payment and cashless transactions, to tide over the liquid cash crunch.
Mobile wallet companies including Paytm, have seen manifold increase in transactions and new users coming on board with people turning to digital platforms as serpentine queues outside ATMs continue to hassle cash-strapped public.
Stating that there are 740 million cards in India at present, but only 1.5 million POS machines, Sharma said that he expects 10 million app POS to be downloaded before the weekend. As many as 15 million app POS merchant are expected by November-end, he added.
Paytm will not charge transaction fee for the same till December 31.
"There will be no fee for all debit cards till December 31 on the App POS ...Paytm expects to launch its Payments Bank at the earliest and if you take this money to our Payments Bank, it will be perpetually free," he said.
Only 3.5% of all retail outlets in the country accept debit and credit cards with near zero penetration in the mass retail segment, which makes up more than 90% of all retail in India, Paytm said.
"India is witnessing a digital and cashless revolution. With this facility, shopkeepers can accept credit or debit card payment of up to Rs 50,000 a month at zero per cent charge and thereafter take it to the bank account," he said.
The App POS has been updated for Android devices at present, and iOS version is in the works.
The company said it is currently registering an average of 5 million transactions, with an annualised gross merchandise value or GMV - an industry term for estimating the total worth of goods sold through a digital platform - of Rs 30,000 crore.
The company further said that over 15,00,000 offline and online merchants across India accept Paytm as their preferred payment mode.
(With inputs from PTI)