UPI SBI Payment App Download A Push Towards Cashless Ecosystem

UPI SBI Payment App Download A Push Towards Cashless Ecosystem

Demonetization – a surprising and bold move. Push for cashless economy post demonetization – not very anticipated by logical! Yes, that is what India experienced during the closing months of year 2016. Unexpected, unanticipated – PM Modi waged a full-fledged war against corruption and black money. Of course, it created immense trouble in form of cash crunch. Hours of standing in queues for withdrawing cash from ATMs and banks – that’s something that everyone faced – from poor to rich, from common man to politician.


Then suddenly…

PM Modi and his cabinet started speaking of cashless economy. The opposition plunged in directly and said that this crusade of Modi against black money and corruption is nothing but a big hoax. It is a big scam and that the government is trying to make people forget about it by talking of cashless economy.

What people don’t realize is that cashless economy is a vital factor when it comes to fight black money. Absence of cash and maintenance of digital records will ensure that hoarding money comes to an end. It will ensure that parallel economy that thrives on black money (cash) will end quickly. So, it was a well-thought plan.

In order to boost cashless transactions, the government instructed NPCI or National Payments Corporation of India to introduce a system that will facilitate digital transactions. The requirement was that of creating an extra layer of protection so that online fraud doesn’t take a toll on digital transactions and demotivate people from using this mode of transaction.

The end result of this was the development of Unified Payments Interface of UPI.

A Bit About UPI

Modi and his warriors have been planning demonetization for quite some time. They knew that once the high value currency notes were pulled out of market, people will require a channel through which they can safely indulge in digital transactions. Hence, long before demonetization was declared, the Union Government asked NPCI to provide the payment interface which will allow safe digital transactions, eliminating security threats.

This led to the birth of UPI or Unified Payments Interface, which went live during the last week of August, 2016. The Unified Payments Interface is very much like a debit card or internet banking or a mobile wallet or a cheque. The only difference is that it is completely digital and eliminates the need for disclosing bank account number while making digital transactions. Only a virtual ID (very much like email ID) can be used for sending or receiving money to or from someone.

The interface is based on what is known as IMPS or Immediate Payment Service, which already existed before the introduction of UPI. In IMPS, one had to provide bank details and use what is known as MMID (Mobile Money Identifier) to send or receive funds.

One of the unique features of IMPS is that it works instantaneously. The money sent by someone will be received instantly by the receiving party. Best part, IMPS works round-the-clock and it can be used during holidays (both during public holidays and weekends). This means that IMPS can be used 365 days a year and 24 hours a day.

The UPI interface is same as IMPS except that the UPI interface eliminates the need for sending money using bank account number. This means that the person who wants to receive money will not have to disclose the bank account number. He or she can simply provide a virtual ID (which has to be created and registered with the bank) and that ID can be used by another person to send money.

Here are some benefits of UPI:

  • It allows interoperability. This means that UPI can be used for sending money from one bank to any other bank which allows / accepts UPI payments.
  • Money transfer is instant.
  • Money transfer can be made 24×7 and 365 days a year.
  • It provides additional security because only a virtual ID can be used for transaction and there is no need for providing name, bank account number, IFS Code etc.

There is actually a lot more to speak about UPI but since this article has a different purpose, we will stop here and focus on the actual topic in hand. We will now talk of UPI SBI.


State Bank of India, which is the largest bank in India was a latecomer in UPI world. Many other banks already launched UPI apps before SBI did. However, SBI soon jumped on to the bandwagon and released its UPI-based mobile application, which is known as SBI Pay.

Before we move ahead and discuss some nitty gritty details about SBI Pay, here is something you need to know:

  • UPI works only and only with smartphones. This system will not work with basic phones.
  • UPI works only with GSM-enabled handsets. In case your handset is a CDMA handset, you cannot use it.
  • UPI requires you to have an UPI app linked to your bank account (in case you are not using the UPI app of a bank).
  • In order to use virtual ID, you need to create a virtual ID and have it registered and linked with your bank account.

Back to SBI Pay…

State Bank of India became the 18th bank in India to offer UPI payments app. Named as SBI Pay, this UPI enabled app has a number of features which are mentioned below in a tabular format for easy understanding:

Feature Explanation
Payment initiation Payment can be initiated both by the sender and the receiver. When the payment is initiated by the sender, the option is called PAY and when the payment is initiated by the receiver, it is called COLLECT.
Interface Payments can be made / collected through both web interface and mobile interface. As of now, only mobile interface has been rolled out by SBI.
Transaction type Currently, SBI Pay supports only P2P or Peer-to-Peer transactions (simply put, individual or general consumers can use it). SBI Pay currently doesn’t support merchant transactions.
Payment mode The SBI Pay is in its first phase. This phase has only VPA or Virtual Payment Address-enabled and Bank Account and IFSC-enable payment methods. In the second phase, additional payment options like Aadhaar-enabled payments and Mobile Number and MMID-enabled payments will be added to the app.
Platform support SBI Pay is available only and only for Android platform for now. NPCI has not provided any specification for iOS-based app and hence, people with iOS devices need to wait till NPCI gives iOS specifications. SBI Pay for iOS will be launched later.
Non-SBI users Those who are not customers of SBI can also make use of this application. It is not necessary to have an account with SBI to use this application.
Charges As for now, UPI-based payments / transactions will not have any kind of charges. This rule may however change later and each transaction may attract some charge.

Virtual Payment Address for SBI Pay

Any UPI-enabled app will ask for the creation of VPA or Virtual Payment Address. This address will be mapped to the account number of the person using the app. Also, the mobile number on which the app has been installed will be mapped to the account number. However, it is mandatory to:

  • Ensure that the mobile number is registered for mobile banking with SBI if you want to use SBI Pay.

The virtual payment address will not be automatically generated. It has to be generated separately. In order to generate a virtual payment address, one needs to follow the steps below:

  • Download and install SBI Pay on smartphone and initiate / open the app.
  • The app will show a confirmation message for sending registration SMS. You need to confirm the same. You will be charged for the SMS.
  • Once you confirm, the registration page will show up where you will have to enter the following details:
    • Preferred VBA
    • First and Last name
    • Email ID
    • Security question
    • Security answer
    • Name of the bank where you hold an account
  • Once you provide the necessary information, tap on ‘Next’ and the app will automatically send a confirmation SMS to UPI Engine.
  • On the app, select ‘Account’ and from there, click on ‘Register’ option.

Some Important Information About SBI Pay

  • SBI Pay can be used for carrying out UPI payments with any other bank account number provided the other bank is on UPI platform. In such a scenario, the other bank will be considered as Payee/Payer Bank while SBI will be referred to as PSP or Payment Service Provider.
  • The virtual payment address that is provided by SBI Pay is of the type: uniqueid@sbi. Example: sonia@sbi.
  • SBI Pay allows creation of multiple VPAs.
  • SBI Pay will allow up to INR 10,000 of transaction in a single day and the maximum number of transactions allowed is 5.
  • In case there are multiple accounts with SBI, one single VPA can be used with both by simply toggling between the accounts. Account management section of SBI Pay provides the option for setting the preferred account.
  • SBI Pay will not allow linking NRO and NRE accounts and it will not allow to send money abroad.

Using SBI Pay and VPA for sending money

Here are the steps that you need to follow for sending money using VPA:

  1. Open SBI Pay app and login.
  2. Tap on ‘Pay’ icon.
  3. Select the account from which you want to pay.
  4. Select the address type of the payee.
  5. In case you are using VPA, enter the VPA of the person to whom you want to send money.
  6. Enter the name of the payee, enter the remarks (optional), enter the amount you want to transfer.
  7. Tap on ‘Pay’ option. The app will ask for MPIN. Provide the same and then tap on ‘Submit’.

Using SBI Pay and VPA for receiving money

Here are the steps you need to follow for receiving money using VPA:

  1. Open SBI Pay app and login.
  2. Tap on ‘Collect’ icon.
  3. Enter the virtual payment address of the payer or the person from whom you want to receive money.
  4. Enter the name of the payer and any remarks (optional). Enter the amount you want to receive.
  5. Select the expiration for the collect request. It can be day and it can be minutes.
  6. Tap on ‘Initiate Collect’ button.

The payer will receive the request from your end and if the payer accepts / approves the request, you will receive the money.

Responding to ‘Collect Pay Request’

If someone has sent a collect request to you, you need to respond to the same. For that:

  1. Open SBI Pay app and login.
  2. Tap on ‘Approve’ icon.
  3. Select / tap the ‘collect request’ you have.
  4. On the next page, either select ‘Approve’ or ‘Reject’.
  5. You will be asked for MPIN. Enter MPIN to authorize the payment.

That’s pretty much everything that you need to know about UPI SBI or SBI Pay to get started. It is simple, effective and fast. Change the way you transact, go digital. That’s the future.

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