To offer the benefits of India’s Interbank Mobile Payment Service to more consumers, Federal Bank on March 20 expanded the scope of the service for its customers by enabling them to transfer funds to users across banks even if they not a mobile-banking customers.

Previously, the Kochi-based bank’s customers could only make the interbank funds transfers through the National Electronic Funds Transfer mechanism, a spokesperson for the bank tells PaymentsSource. Now they may transfer funds immediately through online banking to any other bank’s accountholders registered for the Interbank Mobile Payment Service.

In the past, sending fund transfers via online banking processed and settled in batches from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Customers who want to transfer funds must register for online banking and update their mobile number with the bank, the spokesperson says.

To transfer funds, customers select the account to debit, enter the beneficiary’s Mobile Money Identifier (a seven-digit random number the bank issues at registration for the mobile payment service) and enter the online-banking password to authorize the transaction.

Customers may transfer up to 50,000 rupees (US$1,000 or 760 euros) daily and up to 200,000 rupees per month.

The National Payment Corp. of India rolled out the Interbank Mobile Payment Service in 2010, initially enabling customers of the country’s banks to exchange funds to one another using their mobile phones (see story).

National Payments expanded the service last May to include payments, enabling consumers to user their phones to pay utility bills, make purchases at retail locations, pay government fees and make donations (see story).

In November, the Reserve Bank of India authorized the transferring of funds from ATMs to mobile phones as part of an expansion of the Interbank Mobile Payment Service (see story).

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