RBI nod for testing offline e-payments

RBI under its sandbox pilot project has allowed a contactless, prepaid card that can be used without any connectivity and three other technologies that enable offline UPI payments.

A regulatory sandbox refers to testing of new products or services by customers within a controlled environment. Regulators may relax some prescription to enable innovation. Last year, the RBI had released a framework for its regulatory sandbox and said it was aimed at testing product viability. The central bank had specifically invited technology developers for solutions using offline and feature phone-based payment services.

Four companies were allowed to test their products- Tap Smart Data Information Services (CityCash). The company has developed a near-field communication (NFC) -based prepaid card and point of sale (PoS) device to facilitate offline person-to-merchant (P2M) transactions. The card can be used as a travel pass and e-wallet to purchase bus tickets as well as pay select merchants.