HDFC Bank to launch Digital Wallet

HDFC Bank is drawing on its clout as a banker to most of the e-retailers to launch a digital wallet and an electronic marketplace for various online merchants. Once an accountholder or cardholder (even non-HDFC Bank debit and credit cardholder) registers for a digital wallet, he can transact on most websites using only wallet credentials.
HDFC Bank’s entry is significant considering that it is the market leader both as a card issuer and in processing card payments for merchants, and accounts 40% of e-commerce transactions. Also, the digital wallet — which can be accessed from a mobile app or online — will be enabled for contactless payment using Near Field Communication (NFC) by flashing the phone in front of readers that can accept NFC payments.
The bank is betting big on the wallet because it is now seeing a shift in e-commerce from desktop to mobile phone. Whether it is tickets or consumer goods, mobiles account for half of purchases in terms of number of transactions. But the complexity of entering card details onto a phone screen also leads to high level of failed transactions. An e-wallet meets RBI’s requirement of two-factor authentication but does away with the hassle of filling card details every time.
The bank plans to expand its Smartbuy subsite, which aggregates offers from various merchants for HDFC Bank customers. All the merchants have been signed on for the digital wallet and they have mobile sites of their own, which can be accessed via HDFC Bank’s wallet app that will facilitate a one-click purchase.

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