Amazon India Launches Their Own Mobile Wallet; But Comparing It With PhonePe Would Be Unfair


Amazon Wallet

Amazon India has finally launched their own mobile wallet – Amazon Pay Balance, which will help their customers to go cashless, and complete the payment easily.

In a statement, Amazon India said, “With no additional authentications required, customers get the benefit of fast and smooth checkout (from Amazon Pay). Amazon Pay Balance helps customers store balances for essential items and solves the pain point of tendering exact amount of cash at the time of delivery.”

Going by the company statement, it is clear that Amazon India’s own e-wallet has been created to counter the cash on delivery procedure heads-on, and enable their customers to pay via e-wallet, rather than cash. The strategy is somewhat similar to what Flipkart wanted to achieve with their own e-wallet: Flipkart Money. But, there are massive differences between the ambitions of these, two wallets (we will come back on that later)

In the month of March this year, we had reported that Amazon India will launch their own wallet, albeit via acquisitions.

Advantage Amazon Pay Balance

Users can top-up their e-wallets on Amazon using the traditional methods: debit/credit card or net banking. Once the balance arrives in the wallet, it can be used to shop on products on Amazon, as well as pay for cash on delivery, which seems the main motive of this launch.

Besides, the refunds can be sent faster as now, Amazon will directly transfer the refunds to the wallet, instead of crediting back to the bank account. This will surely reduce a lot of paper-work and additional tasks for the back-end team at Amazon India.

As a welcome offer, Amazon India is offering upto 15% cashback (max Rs 450) on those payments which are made by their new e-wallet.

Sriram Jagannathan, vice-president (payments) at Amazon India said, “We will keep innovating to ensure that our customers have a more hassle free payment experience.”

Can We Compare Amazon Pay Balance With PhonePe?

Amazon India had applied for semi-wallet license in March, 2016. for which they received the nod now. Interestingly, Flipkart too had applied for semi-wallet license via Flipkart Money.

However, it would be unfair to compare Amazon Pay Balance with Flipkart Money because of several reasons: the primary being that Flipkart Money has now converted into PhonePe, which was India’s 1st UPI based semi-open wallet.

Thus, the ambitions of PhonePe is much larger, compared to Amazon Pay Balance, which has been targeted for their own customers, against universal appeal of PhonePe.

Flipkart’s PhonePe wallet, which is UPI based, can be used to transact every type of activity such as peer-to-peer money transfer, bill payments, recharges, online shopping on other portals and so on. However, Amazon Pay Balance can be used only for shopping within Amazon India website.

PhonePe already has been downloaded by 100,000 users and boasts of 500,000 registered users (as on November, 2016) and it is gradually becoming the defacto payment method for Flipkart, Myntra and Jabong users.

Can Amazon Pay Balance replicate the success of PhonePe? Will Amazon customers even bother to use yet another e-wallet for Amazon-only shopping? Do share your views by commenting right here!

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