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India Central Bank Explores Use of Artificial Intelligence to Make Instant Payments

3 mins
Updated by Geraint Price
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In Brief

  • The governor of India's central bank (RBI) is proposing AI-powered instant conversational payments to boost digitalization in India.
  • RBI's proposed feature will allow users to initiate and complete UPI payments through AI in English and Hindi.
  • Alongside UPI's success, RBI has launched its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) e-rupee, currently in pilot stage.
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The governor of India’s central bank has proposed the introduction of artificial intelligence-powered (AI) instant “conversational payments.”

Shaktikanta Das, head of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), is looking to introduce the technology, which will enable users to engage in conversation with AI-powered systems and make payments in a safe and secure environment.

Nations are increasingly focused on the digitalization of their economy. While India already has a massive usage of its Unified Payments Interface (UPI) system, the RBI wants to integrate conversational payments through AI.

India Plans UPI Conversational Transactions in Hindi and English

The RBI announced that it had proposed a feature allowing users to converse with the AI to initiate and complete a UPI payment. 

Initially, a user can pass voice commands in Hindi and English. But eventually, the central bank will work towards enabling conversations in more regional languages.

UPI is an instant peer-to-peer and peer-to-merchant transaction facility available on mobile devices. The facility has managed to achieve high penetration in the country.

Last month, UPI recorded 9.96 billion transactions. And the users transacted 15.34 trillion INR ($185.64 billion) using the UPI facility in a single month. In July, UPI achieved 58% year-on-year growth in transaction count and 44% year-on-year growth in transaction amount.

India UPI monthly volume. Source: X (Twitter)
UPI monthly volume. Source: X (Twitter)

Push for Digital Currency

While UPI has experienced wide scale adoption in India, the RBI has also launched its central bank digital currency (CBDC), the e-rupee. Currently, the Indian CBDC is in its pilot stage.

Click here to learn how to use e-rupee

In July, BeInCrypto reported that the Indian private lender, HDFC bank, had enrolled over 100,000 customers and 170,000 merchants in the e-rupee pilot program. 

Many countries are racing towards developing their own CBDC. The Bank of International Settlement (BIS) believes that nearly two dozen central banks will launch their digital currencies by the end of the decade.

On July 20, BeInCrypto reported that China’s CBDC, the digital yuan, had hit the milestone of $250 billion in transactions. Furthermore, China is working to develop the payment platform mBridge with Thailand, Hong Kong, and UAE. The platform aims to establish the yuan as a dollar alternative for international trade settlements. 

With the rise of the popularity of CBDC, Nischal Shetty, the co-founder of Sharedum, told BeInCrypto that the world might witness a shift from dollarization. 

Got something to say about India’s AI instant payments or anything else? Write to us or join the discussion on our Telegram channel. You can also catch us on TikTok, Facebook, or X (Twitter).

For BeInCrypto’s latest Bitcoin (BTC) analysis, click here.

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Harsh Notariya excels in delivering SEO-optimized crypto news under tight deadlines. Previously, as a Growth Marketer at Sporty and a Community Consultant at Totality Corp, he significantly boosted community engagement and followers. Harsh also crafted engaging content for top crypto influencer Shivam Chhuneja, blending meme references for an educational yet fun experience. His versatile skills make him a notable figure in crypto journalism.
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