Uber, the world’s largest ridesharing company, plans to launch its own digital wallet in India. Now, you not only benefit from Uber when you become an Uber driver, or request rides through the Uber app conveniently; you can add ease of payment to the list. This will be the first market where the San Francisco-based company is making such a move. Despite the company's existing partnership with Paytm that allows riders to pay their fares digitally, Uber feels it’s time to introduce its own payment wallet.
The Uber digital wallet could be seen as an attempt to provide an alternative means of paying for rides besides accepting payment via credit cards, direct cash or through affiliate digital wallets like Paytm and Airtel Money. This way, Uber partners and drivers do not have to worry about giving back change as there is no physical exchange of cash.
It's been reported that Uber began working on the closed wallet feature right after the RBI mandate was issued. As reported by Economic Times, Uber had to start working with wallet service providers after the Reserve Bank of India in August 2014 ruled that a two-step authentication for credit card payments was necessary for foreign companies like Uber. The mentioned source also claims to have tried to talk to a representative of Uber, but received no comment on the possible launch date for the Uber digital wallet in India.
However, background digging has further revealed that the company will begin by offering a closed wallet that will not require RBI authorization. Commuters will be able to upload up to a maximum of Rs 5,000. Digital wallets provide an easy alternative for retail payments.
Please note that the Uber business model is designed to accommodate digital payment systems that facilitate ease of payment. For a tech company like Uber, introducing a digital payment wallet in India is a smart way to help customers move away from cash transactions.