In September last year, Google launched Tez, a digital payments app, entering the crowded and fiercely competitive digital payments space in India.
Tez, which means ‘fast’ in Hindi, is a UPI-based app that can be used for online transactions, as well as paying offline at stores. UPI (Unified Payments Interface) was launched by National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), an umbrella organization for all retail payment systems in India. While NPCI is a private entity, it is regulated by the country’s central bank – Reserve Bank of India.
According to the company, since the launch of the app, over 22 million people and businesses have used Tez to make over 750 million transactions that are collectively worth over $30 billion annually.
At its annual ‘Google for India’ event in New Delhi today, Google announced that Tez will be called Google Pay going forward as the company will look at taking Tez beyond India and hence has unified all of its payment offerings globally.
However, other than the name, the app stays the same with the similar feature set, so users in India will not get the marquee Google Pay features that are available in the US and elsewhere. At least for now.
One of the marquee new features is Google’s entry into the financial services segment. The company is working with a few banks in India – HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Federal Bank, and Kotak Mahindra Bank – to provide pre-approved instant loans to Google Pay users. This feature will roll out to eligible users within the next few weeks.
Google is also working to make Google Pay even more useful by increasing the number of places you can use it in and expanding services for merchants. The company is partnering with the largest stores across India, payment technology providers like Pinelabs and Bill Desk, and the top banks in the country. It will introduce deeper integrations with online merchants including the ability to pay using Google Pay without leaving the merchant’s app.
Have you used Tez by Google? What’s your preferred digital payment service and what are other Google Pay features that you’d like to see in India? Tell us in the comments!