On Monday, the Indian fintech company Paytm unveiled its latest innovation: the ‘Card Soundbox,’ a device priced at 999 rupees ($12.08) designed to empower merchants to accept mobile and card payments seamlessly across various networks, including Visa, Mastercard, American Express, and India’s own RuPay.
This move comes at a time when Paytm faces competition from other industry players such as Google Pay and Walmart’s PhonePe in the Indian market.
Paytm Launches “Card Soundbox” Device
The Card Soundbox not only enables merchants to facilitate card payments but also provides an additional layer of security by offering instant audio payment alerts, thus mitigating the risk of fraud. This development coincides with Pine Labs, one of Paytm’s rivals, introducing a similar device at a significantly lower cost than a regular Point of Sale (PoS) terminal.
Paytm’s journey to prominence began when digital payments gained traction in India following the government’s decision to ban high-value currency notes in 2016. This transformation has witnessed businesses of all sizes, from local vegetable vendors to large showrooms, embracing digital payment methods as a means to conduct transactions conveniently and securely.
Vijay Shekhar Sharma, the founder and CEO of Paytm, stated, “We have found that merchants and consumers need card acceptance as simply as mobile payments with Paytm QR Code.”
Pine Labs, Competitor To Paytm Positioned its Own Product
Pine Labs, a key competitor, positioned its own “price-friendly product” as a catalyst for accelerating digital payment adoption in India. Additionally, companies like PhonePe have also ventured into this domain with similar soundbox solutions that read out the received payment amounts for the merchant’s convenience.
While Paytm made this significant announcement, the market response was mixed, with the company’s shares closing mostly flat on Monday, recovering from some earlier losses incurred during the trading session.
In summary, Paytm’s introduction of the ‘Card Soundbox’ represents a strategic move to enhance the convenience and security of digital payments for merchants in India. As competition in the fintech sector intensifies, such innovations are expected to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of payments in the country.