I am considerably excited for BlackBerry and India!
BlackBerry has immense scope for growth in India due to growth of Aadhar and unified payments interface. Here’s a briefing:
1) Aadhar is a 12 digit number like social security number. Each citizen has it as a proof of identity. It’s linked to biometrics (finger prints/iris scans). Government of India is linking aadhar number to filing income tax returns, to mobile numbers and host of other schemes to provide directed subsidies.
In the foreseeable future, it’s going to be linked to national electronic health records as well.
2) Unified Payments Interface (UPI) is based on instant payment service. It links to mobile phone number and the bank account. Each user gets a virtual address (like an email). My virtual address is xyz@upi. This is bank agnostic and provides a mechanism for transferring funds immediately. The maximum transfer allowed is upto ₹1 lakh (approximately 2000 USD)
How does it work?
I add the UPI address of recipient. Add the amount requested to be sent or received. I authorise it with 6 digit PIN and viola. Instant transfer in seconds. It’s better than PayPal or the host of other competing services.
How are these two important for BlackBerry?
It’s primarily an enterprise solution that can be sold to banks/ E-commerce firms/ logistics partners and most importantly the Government of India. End to end security/ encryption etc. BBM enterprise can add the social networking layer to payment apps.
Why BBM? It’s legendary! Going through the highly secure NoC’s and certifications, BBM enterprise is the best way forward.
WhatsApp is now looking to integrate UPI in person to person payments business. It hopes to make money by more granular data about financial interactions and sharing with Facebook.
There’s an under need for having a secure and private platform for both Aadhar/ UPI.
In addition, BlackBerry has a tie up with Optiemus and we are likely to see new “made in India” devices soon.
Thurber said Optiemus’ design and go-to-market plans combined with Black-Berry’s secure and productive software will be a great fit for customers in India.
“This fits in our overarching principle, in the new business model, which can be summed up as “global consistency with local flavour.” We believe we will achieve greater localization and scale in India with our partnership,” he added.
Watch this space!!