Digital Payments Hotting Up In India

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The world of digital payments is hotting up in India. Two of India's biggest banks, State Bank of India and ICICI Bank, are working on mobile payments technologies. State Bank of India has announced that it is currently developing a system similar to Apple Pay, which will allow customers to link their credits cards to their smartphones. ICICI Bank is also developing a mobile payments app. Both systems will rely on host card emulation and near field communication technologies, whereby smartphones placed near a card-reader can communicate with the card-reader just like a card. The lack of widespread card-readers in India could be a potential stumbling block, although neither bank has commented on this. Separately, the social media giant Facebook has partnered up with the Indian online payment gateway company CitrusPay. Currently users can only use CitrusPay to spend money on Facebook games, but it is assumed that users will eventually be able to buy items from ecommerce pages on the site. The Indian ecommerce market is currently worth 11 billion US dollars and is growing rapidly, with online sales expected to reach 220 billion US dollars by 2025 according to estimates by Merrill Lynch. 

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