In a major flip to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg to make deeper inroads into the Indian digital payments ecosystem, the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has approved an additional 60 million users on unified payments interface (UPI) for WhatsApp. With this approval, WhatsApp will now be able to expand the service to 100 million users out of more than 400 million in the country. In November last year, the NPCI approved increasing the user cap for WhatsApp's payment service from the current 20 million to 40 million users. The NPCI has been giving approval to WhatsApp in a phased manner so that the competition in the digital payment space dominated by PhonePe, Google Pay and Paytm is not stifled. WhatsApp India has said it will make significant investments regarding digital payments on its platform across the country, to accelerate its growth in a market where adoption of UPI-based payments has exploded.
As the adoption of 'payments on WhatsApp' increases with users across the country, the company looks forward to working with the NPCI to further expand it to all users. The Meta-owned company has introduced several India-specific features in payments on WhatsApp and have seen exciting results. WhatsApp kicked off its ambitious peer-to-peer (P2P) digital payments pilot project in India in 2018 with nearly 10 lakh users. According to the NPCI, UPI had processed 5.04 billion transactions till March 29, amounting to Rs 8.88 trillion. This was 11.5 per cent higher than the volume of transactions processed in February and 7.5 per cent higher in terms of value of transactions processed.