123PAY: UPI for Feature phones

On 8th March 2022, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das launched Unified Payments Interface (UPI) for feature phones called “UPI123Pay”.

About UPI 123PAY

  • UPI ‘123PAY’ is a three-step method to initiate and execute services for those who use feature phones. Except ‘scan and pay’ option, all other transactions can be done by feature phones, with the help of UPI 123PAY.
  • Available services include initiating payments, paying utility bills, recharging FAST Tag, checking bank account balance, setting or changing UPI PIN.
  • Bank account should be linked to feature phone to use UPI 123PAY. There is no need for an internet connection, to initiate and execute transactions.

Four technology alternatives

According to RBI, four technology options can be utilized by users of feature phones for various transactions. They include:

  1. Calling an IVR (interactive voice response) number
  2. Application functionality in feature phones
  3. Missed call-based approach
  4. Proximity sound-based payments.


  • Along with UPI 123 PAY, RBI Governor also launched the “DigiSaathi”, a 24×7 helpline for digital payments. It is set up by the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI).
  • Digisaathi will assist customers with their queries and grievances on digital payments via website and chatbot.
  • Customers can also use www.digisaathi.info or call on 14431 and 1800 891 3333 for grievance redressal or queries on digital payments.

These initiatives are expected to help around 40 crore mobile phone users in India who possess feature phones.



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