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India’s national payment agency launches AI-based chatbot

The National Payments Corporation of India recently launched an artificial intelligence (AI)-based virtual assistant to improve digital financial inclusion in the country.

The chatbot, PAi will work round the clock to assist provide customers with accurate information on NPCI products like FASTag, RuPay, Unified Payments Interface (UPI), and Aadhaar-Enabled Payment System (AePS).

According to an article by government-run IndiaAI, users can submit questions in English or Hindi, either through a text or voice message on NPCI portals.

The questions will be answered through verified automated responses on all NPCI’s products. The chatbot will be accessible to global RuPay cardholders as well.

The technology was developed by a Bengaluru-based startup. PAi is intended to help increase the adoption of digital payments among Indian citizens. The company’s AI and machine learning-powered NLP chatbot technology has been accessed by over 200 million consumers.

PAi will soon be available in several regional languages of India.

The NPCI Chief of Marketing, Kunal Kalawatia, said that the organisation is glad to unveil the AI-powered Pai for its users. In this fast-paced world, addressing user queries is the need of the hour, he noted. NPCI believes that PAi will create entirely new user experiences that are as natural and easy as conversations, help users know about NCPI’s products, and in-turn promote digital payments.

According to the founder of the company that designed the chatbot, conversational AI will be the core for business continuity as the world progresses. Chatbots powered by conversational AI brings every customer closer to verified information on their digital payments. The agency said it is excited to partner with NPCI and contribute to the vision of building robust digital payment infrastructure for India and the world.

Earlier this year, NPCI, in association with the payment ecosystem players, co-created an industry campaign.

UPI Chalega was launched to promote UPI as easy, safe, and instant mode of payment. The campaign is aimed to guide users towards the right usage of UPI and help create a habitual change, use of UPI in their daily life. The campaign also focuses on safety aspects while transacting on UPI-enabled apps.

The campaign messaging would focus on social distancing and using UPI for recharges, sending money, donations, groceries, medical expenses, paying salaries, and avoiding cash and stepping out for payment needs.

For vendors and merchants, NPCI has also fast-tracked the onboarding system on UPI or UPI-QR to make it totally contactless and fully online. Vendors do not have to compromise on self-isolation guidelines to complete this essential task, the organisation said in a press release. Vendors and merchants can be safe as they serve society and provide essential services.

NPCI was incorporated in 2008 as an umbrella agency for operating retail payments and settlement systems in India. NPCI has created a robust payment and settlement infrastructure in the country.

Its website claimed that the organisation is focused on bringing innovations in the retail payment systems with technology and is relentlessly working to transform India into a digital economy. It is facilitating secure payments solutions with nationwide accessibility at minimal cost in furtherance of India’s aspiration to be a fully digital society.

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