PhonePe Surpasses Google Pay to Become Leading UPI App in December, NPCI Data Reveals

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PhonePe, the digital payments platform owned by Walmart, has surpassed Google Pay and emerged as the top unified payments interface (UPI) app in December. The platform processed 902.03 million transactions accounting for Rs. 1,82,126.88 crores in total, according to the latest data released by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI). Google Pay, on the other hand, has dropped to the second position with 854.49 million transactions amounting Rs. 1,76,199.33 crores. Both PhonePe and Google Pay account for more than 78 percent of the total 2,234.16 million UPI transactions that took place in December. The two apps also captured over 86 percent of the overall UPI transaction volume of Rs. 4,16,176.21 crores.

The data provided by the NPCI shows that PhonePe has seen over 3.87 percent increase in UPI transaction volume and 3.8 percent spike in transaction value in December when compared to the 868.4 million of transaction volume and Rs. 1,75,453.85 crores of transaction value recorded in November.

In contrast, Google Pay has seen a drastic fall of over 11 percent in transaction volume and over 9.15 percent drop in transaction value in December. It dominated the UPI apps market in November, with 960.02 million transactions at an overall value of Rs. 1,61,418.19 crores.

Paytm Payments Bank has come third — after PhonePe and Google Pay. It resulted in 256.36 million transactions worth Rs. 31,291.83 crores in December, as per the NPCI data.

Amazon Pay and NPCI’s BHIM app have emerged as the fourth and fifth leading UPI apps in terms of transaction volume. While Amazon Pay initiated 40.53 million transactions worth Rs. 3,508.93 crores, BHIM processed 24.80 million transactions worth Rs. 7,748.29 crores in December.

In terms of value, Cred has overtaken Amazon Pay with processing 3.61 million transactions worth Rs. 3,793.32 in December, the NPCI data shows.

WhatsApp also formally joined the payments market in November. Although the Facebook-owned app was allowed to play against the likes of PhonePe, Google Pay, and Paytm in a graded manner initially, it has managed to see over 161 percent increase in volume and over 114 percent increase in value of transactions in December — just prior to the public outrage over its privacy policy update that it eventually delayed until May.

According to NPCI, WhatsApp processed 810,000 transactions worth Rs. 29.72 crores in December, up from 310,000 transactions worth Rs. 13.87 crores in November.

Overall, UPI transactions have grown 1.08 percent in volume and 6.43 percent in value in December. There are also 207 banks with UPI support, up from 200 banks in November.

In November, the NPCI announced a cap of 30 percent on the total volume of UPI transactions processed by third party app (TPA) providers. That cap has come into place since the beginning of January and is believed to majorly impact platforms including PhonePe and Google Pay, while giving a scope to increase further to Paytm and MobiKwik.

What will be the most exciting tech launch of 2021? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.

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