Mumbai: After hardware, the country’s second-largest handset maker Micromax now aims to expand its software services business across areas like payments, e-commerce and healthcare.
The city-based firm has partnered with TranServ to integrate payments with its service platform, which will allow Micromax users to use mobile wallets in a simplified manner.
“This is India’s first smartphone-based native payments solution. We will roll out a series of payment solutions specifically designed to meet the varied demand of consumers,” Micromax co-founder Vikas Jain told reporters here on Tuesday.
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Using the solution, Micromax users will be able to conduct financial transactions like to send or request money, splitting bills and to make payments to contacts in the device address book, he added.
“Over the next three months, 80-90% of our portfolio of handsets will be covered. While the new devices will come with the integrated platform, the older devices will get a software update for the same,” he said.
Jain said once a consumer buys a Micromax phone, they will get a card with it that can be used for physical transactions.
“Both the card and the feature on the phone can be used to make payments. It’s an opt-in service, we will not force users to use it. Users can fill in money through net banking, debit/credit cards as well as over 1.35 lakh retails stores where Micromax devices are sold,” he added.
Asked about the number of users targeted, he said the company expects to “reach out to 10% of the Indian population.” He further said, “Our vision is to enable users to enjoy a seamless experience across categories like hospitality, travel, healthcare, entertainment, e-commerce or payments. We have a road map to provide integrated services and leverage the mobile as a platform to converge these services.”
Jain added that the company will continue to invest resources, partnerships, time, effort and money to grow its services business.
The services platform is similar to that of its subsidiary, YU Televentures. YU had, last week, announced its entry of YU into software services, which offers users access to verticals like travel, food and entertainment through a single window.
“However, what separates us is the pool of customers. We have begun testing our service and are in discussions with e-commerce players also to integrate them with our platform,” Jain said.
Talking about the association with Micromax, TranServ co-founder and CEO Anish Williams said the future of digital payments in India is heavily inclined towards smart-phones.
“We will see a rollout of unique digital financial solutions like micro-loans and other personal financial services,” he added.