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Google Gets into Digital Payments Fray in India


Google is expected to launch a mobile payments app in India next week, according to several news reports. Google Tez, which means “fast” in Hindi is the anticipated name of the payments service, which Indian news outlet The Ken says is “largely fashioned on the company’s global product—Android Pay.”

As TechCrunch notes, “this is a big deal because Google hasn’t made a big push into payments outside of the U.S.”

It’s not surprising that Google would choose the Indian payments market, which has been abuzz with investments and launches. Following the government’s demonetization efforts last November, digital payments usage increased dramatically in the traditionally cash-centric country. Most recently, Amazon announced the launch of Amazon Pay in India and e-commerce marketplace Flipkart snapped up a $2.5 billion investment from Japan’s SoftBank.

Tez reportedly will offer a comprehensive set of payment options beyond existing products like Android Pay. It also will support Unified Payments Interface (UPI)—a government-backed payment system—and other consumer payment services including Paytm and MobiKwik.

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