Xiaomi has finally kicked off the beta testing of its Mi Pay digital payments platform in India. The Beijing-headquartered company has partnered with ICICI Bank and PayU to launch the Mi Pay platform in the country. Originally, Mi Pay debuted as an NFC-based payments service in China by partnering with China UnionPay. The India version of Mi Pay is similar to how Google Pay enables mobile transactions. However, unlike the Google Pay app in India, Xiaomi claims that its native digital payments platform supports not just UPI but also all "leading" credit cards and debit cards.
While announcing the new development, Xiaomi in an official forum post on Wednesday revealed that National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) has cleared Mi Pay for large group usage. This has brought the digital payments platform to beta testing. The platform takes on the likes of Google Pay by enabling users to make payments for utilities such as phone bills and recharge, DTH recharge, water bill, and electricity bill. It is also touted to accept credit cards, debit cards, Internet banking, and UPI.
You need to be on an MIUI Global Beta ROM to participate in the ongoing beta testing of Mi Pay in India. If you are already running a MIUI Global Beta ROM on your phone, you can sign up for the Mi Pay beta testing until December 31.
"Mi Pay's biggest advantage is its deep integration within MIUI which makes transferring payments to contacts and vendors extremely easy," the company said in its forum post.
Xiaomi is aiming to have a seamless integration of Mi Pay within its proprietary Contacts, SMS, Scanner apps and App Vault to enable an on-the-go payments experience. "All user-generated data will be kept in a highly encrypted format within the India-based cloud infrastructure," the company claimed.
Unlike the original Mi Pay model that was launched in China back in September 2016 to make payments using built-in NFC support, Mi Pay in India enables transactions using the UPI PIN and the virtual payments address (VPA). You can also transfer money to other users using UPI or request and collect money from other UPI users for goods and services that accept UI payments - all using your bank account.
Xiaomi also highlights that Mi Pay in India lets users make payments by scanning QR codes, including Bharat QR codes. The platform also generates personal static and dynamic QR code to receive payments from other users via UPI. Further, you can at anytime link or unlink your bank accounts or manage your bank account and check the current balance in your account directly from the platform. There is also an option to modify or reset the UPI PIN for your bank account.
In the recent past, Xiaomi invested in private lenders in India. The Chinese company led a funding round in Bengaluru-based student credit platform KrazyBee in October last year and invested in fintech startup ZestMoney earlier this year. All this has apparently helped understand the market and ultimately bring Mi Pay to the country with a set of localised features.