Indian Fintech startup Slice gets ready to take on PhonePe and Google Pay with UPI support

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Yukta Baid

Bengaluru-based fintech startup Slice is all set to venture into India’s crowded but duopoly-sided UPI payments market. According to a source well versed with the matter, it plans to introduce the feature within a few weeks. UPI is a payments protocol built by a coalition and collaboration of banks.

Currently, the market is dominated by Google Pay and Walmart-backed PhonePe, and Indians have started preferring UPI payments for their regular transactions. Slice is testing out the new methods within the firm first, and it is also redesigning the app so that UPI payments can be made simple and straightforward with a novel in-app navigational flow. 

Slice’s decision to enter the UPI domain comes at an interesting time. The National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), the body that regulates the UPI ecosystem, has been working on developing new changes that will help create a level playing field among apps that use UPI. 

NPCI is working on a feature called digital wrapper which would allow users to send money using their phone numbers, without depending on virtual addresses made for payments. NPCI also plans to standardize the payment ecosystem, which has ignited interest from several firms and how they handle payments. Tata Digital also has plans to launch UPI on its upcoming app. 

UPI support is part of a bigger plan for Slice. It aims to make itself a ‘super app’ for the younger generation’s payment needs. It has already become one of the largest card-using companies in India, supplying about 400,000 cards monthly. It has also expanded its rewards system and is launching a card with a lower minimum limit, which makes it for the masses.

Slice’s UPI support feature would also be the first product to adopt &ID which would allow Slice to mint an NFT against each user’s name when they sign up for the UPI feature. Rajan Bajaj, founder and Chief Executive of Slice, wrote in a LinkedIn post last year that it’s quite regular for them to jump between these different features. He added that Slice was aiming to be the one ID that can be used everywhere, from accepting payments, making investments, doing a KYC, renting a car, or even linking all of a brand’s social presence together. 

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