Google is no rookie when it comes to mobile payments. Its mobile wallet Android Pay is available to users in the Play Store in many countries and can be used to make payments at restaurants and stores. For users in India, the company has launched a new payment app called Google Tez. Its calling card is that it supports UPI (Unified Payment Interface) payments. Developed by NPCI (National Payments Corporation of India), UPI allows users to send/receive payment directly into users’ bank accounts.
Several banks have their own UPI apps or have incorporated the feature in their existing banking app. NPCI itself has an app called BHIM, which it is claimed has been downloaded over 10 million times on the Play Store itself. We take a look at Google’s Tez app and how it compares with the latest version of the BHIM app.
Logging into Tez was simple and easy. You have to provide your 10-digit mobile number which is linked to one or more of your bank accounts to login to the app. Google will verify the number by sending an OTP to the registered number first. So far this is similar to BHIM app. Once you are logged in, Tez automatically identifies the phone’s lockscreen PIN number as the login PIN for the app also, unlike BHIM where users have to create a new PIN number at the beginning itself. Users can switch to the four-digit PIN used to protect the Google account in Tez’s settings->Security at any time.
The advantage of BHIM app is that it automatically detects the SIM cards and the linked number on the phone, so one doesn’t have to type it manually. For enhanced security, both Tez and BHIM log users out and ask them to login again every time the app is minimised and not used for a few seconds.
Once you are logged into BHIM, you get the option to choose a bank account you want to use for UPI payments and generate a VPA (virtual payment address) for their bank account. Google Tez follows the same set of processes. Users have to select the bank, wait for the bank to verify the number and all the accounts in that particular bank will show up on the app.
In terms of interface, the BHIM app looks more objective. You can see the option to send and pay, transactions, and active bank account on the home page. Whereas in Google Tez, a major part of the interface shows The Cash mode feature which allows users to transfer money to nearby Tez users using audio commands to pair with another phone to send money. You can see your transactions on scrolling down on the home page. The option to check the linked bank account and check the account balance shows in the app settings only.
The BHIM app supports more Indian languages than Tez. It can be used in 12 Indian languages such as Hindi, Bengali, Odiya, Punjabi, Marathi, Gujarati, Kannada, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalm, Assamese and Urdu. Tez supports only seven Indian languages—Hindi, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Marathi, Tamil and Telugu as of now.
Cash mode isn’t the only unique element in Tez. It offers Rs51 as reward for inviting a new friend to join the app. To make payments, users have to enter the bank details with IFSC code or the UPI address of the recipient. They can also use QR code to make instant payments. BHIM offers fewer extras compared to Tez. However, the option to pay using QR code is available on it too.