What is UPI ??

UPI ( Unified Payment Interface) is completely different from traditional online transfer methods like NEFT/IMPS. UPI is being developed by NPCI which owns IMPS transfers as well and then integrated with member banks to enable UPI transfers. Let me put it in details about all the available transfer methods before I explain UPI –

IMPS requires Beneficiary’s Account No, IFSC code, Bank Name, Senders Account no and your mobile phone no.

UPI requires only UPI-ID of the sender and the beneficiary . The UPI ID can be as simple as 123456789@ABC where 123456789 is your mobile phone number registered with the bank and ABC is your bank 🙂

  1. What is NEFT ? get bank accnt number and ifsc code, transfer the amount it will get credited in bulk on hourly basis by RBI. This need a valid bank account number, need to have netbanking enabled and more importantly both the parties should have bank account number.
  2. What is IMPs ? This same as NEFT only thing amount get credited to the beneficiary account instantly. IMPS can only be done between two bank accounts which is must. You can transfer using IMPS using ifsc code and account number or you can transfer if you know the unique MMID and mobile number of beneficiary.
  3. Now WHAT IS UPI ? – This does not require having bank account for anybody who want to transfer and get the money i.e. You should have smartphone, install Bank Mobile App like for hdfc- payzapp, ICICI – Pocket etc.) register with your mobile number, GET unique UPI-ID and start banking. In more under-stable way – It is like Paytm where you can transfer the money from one wallet to another using just mobile number, which is already prevailing for Banks as well but between same banks i.e. If you have hdfc mobile app you can transfer the money between another guy who has hdfc payzapp, if you have icici pocket app you can transfer the money from one pocket app to another using mobile number, BUT WITH UPI YOU WOULD BE ABLE TO TRANSFER THE MONEY FROM ONE HDFC PAYZAPP TO ANOTHER ICICI POCKET APP – This is the essence of UPI. If you dont have bank account then also you can install any bank app and send/receive money in your app from any body who has upi enabled app.
  4. So Here is the detailed steps to use UPI –
    1. UPI is integrated with your bank’s app – Install any bank app and register using mobile number.
    2. Once you register, a unique ‘virtual address’ will be created, which will be mapped with your mobile phone.
    3. You can pay for transactions as low as Rs 50 and go all the way up to Rs 1 lakh. Payments can be made between friends, to merchants and even to delivery boys instead of doing cash on delivery.
    4. All you need is the unique ID of the ecommerce firm, of any merchant, friends etc and transfer the amount instantly.
  5. Review of UPI Features –
    1. You can payall the bills, do recharges, pay utililty bills etc – Yes this can be done in any existing bank mobile app so this is not something new.
    2. You can pay for e-com order which are cash on delivery – Yes this you can do since now you have the capability to transfer money to anybody having UPI-Id.
    3. Banking is moving to Cashless Society – Only to a extent since these apps have limit of 1 lac maximum and that also if you provide the KYC. Still people will prefer going to banks for money related things of business transactions . This UPI will be only used for the tech-loving guys who buy online, watch movies by online ticket, lives in metro cities etc. My 70% of Indian living in villages who have just opened account in banks can not use all these tech-savy app unless literacy or more specific finance literacy is not given to them.
  6. Regarding Original Question How to Download ? – Let the member banks be part of UPI, then banks will integrate with their existing mobile apps and then you can download the upi enable app of that particular banks i.e. If you like HDFC then download HDFC UPI MOBILE APP. I am sure you got it, there is no app which RBI own, RBI is just facilitators for transfers.
  7. Banks providing UPI enabled mobile app on Google Play Store:
    Andhra Bank, Axis Bank, Bank of Maharashtra, Bhartiya Mahila Bank, Canara Bank, Catholic Syrian Bank, DCB Bank, Federal Bank, ICICI Bank, TJSB Sahakari Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce, Karnataka Bank, UCO Bank, Union Bank of India, United Bank of India, PNB, South Indian Bank, Vijaya Bank and YES Bank.

I think UPI is idea of Outgoing RBI governer Raghuram Rajan with good intentions and yes this will be new breakthrough for new generations who uses smartphone for each and everything, however this can not be used for larger business transactions, can not be used by mid-age middle class people as they are still struggling to use NEFT/IMPS.

The Unified Payment Interface (UPI) can be thought of like an email ID for your money. It will be an unique identifier that your bank uses to transfer money and make payments using the IMPS (Immediate Payments Service). IMPS is faster than NEFT and lets you transfer money immediately and unlike NEFT, it works 24×7. This means that the online payments will become much easier without requiring a digital wallet or credit or debit card.

Currently, you need to know other person’s account number and bank IFSC code OR MMID and Mobile number.

With UPI, people can send and receive money from their smartphones using just their Aadhaar unique identity number, mobile phone number or virtual payments address without entering bank account details.

Detailed information is available on this link.

Unified Payment Interface (UPI) is a layer built on top of the existing IMPS (Immediate Payment Service) infrastructure .

UPI will help users in immediate transfer of money from any bank account to any other bank account based on a unique identifier, be it P2P (Person to person) or P2M (Person to merchant).

In the background the money transfer will happen using the IMPS infrastructure.

The major difference and advantage of UPI over IMPS is its implementation. UPI allows the user to transfer money using any bank’s app, irrespective of weather you have an account in that bank to anyones bank account with just knowing the ‘Virtual Id’ of the person you want to transfer money to.

This has been possible because of a set of common APIs provided by the NPCI (National Payments Corporation of India) which allows the bank apps to allow everybody to use UPI irrespective of weather they have an account in that bank.

Ofcourse the implementation will differ from bank to bank.

So UPI is basically complementing the existing payment infrastructure making it easier for the consumer to make payments and transfer money instantly.

To know more about UPI in detail checkout this page: What is Unified Payment Interface(UPI)?

To get a hand on experience of how UPI works, try this app: Split your bills with UPI – Android

To answer your questions exactly, first you need to understand UPI is an interface which sits over IMPS technology only. Following are key differences between UPI and IMPS money transfer:

  1. In IMPS you need MMID number of beneficiary and mobile number. In UPI you just need unique UPI id of beneficiary. Nothing else.
  2. In IMPS, you need to login in your online banking account and then make the transfer. In UPI, you can install any bank’s UPI app, register yourself and you can transfer money. Login process in UPI apps is just one initial password. Nothing else. The process is easier and faster.
  3. IMPS charges are higher (Rs 5)/ transaction. In UPI it will be juts 45p/transaction and which would decrease as transactions increases.
  4. With UPI, you can ask for money as well. You just need to enter UPI id of the person whom you want to ask money from. Done. The person will get the trigger with pre-filled details. He/she just needs to enter his Mobile Banking password and done!
  5. With UPI, you can do lot more than just peer to peer transfer. You can pay eCommerce websites, physical stores through your UPI app.
  6. Biggest advantage of UPI over IMPS and any other technology available is that it is form independent. Which means, just download any bank’s UPI app which you like the most and which has best reviews (irrespective you have account with them or not) and you can use that to do all the transactions.

To understand how exactly UPI works, you can refer to following 7 min video:

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