The Reserve Bank of India has permitted YES Bank to provide mobile money services in association with Nokia. Any of the two lakh Nokia retail outlets across India can sign you up for the service. All you need is to fill a form which makes you an account holder with YES Bank within 15 minutes! Then you deposit a amount at the Nokia outlet and in minutes the ‘credit’ appears on your mobile phone.
From now onwards, you can make payments at shops, pay electricity and water bills and even transfer funds to another person.
Nokia has conducted the pilot in Pune, which will end in a few months, the result of which will presumably be inputs for the RBI to regulate the roll-out of the services in India. Nokia has initiated discussions with a few other banks.
Obopay, a California-based company, in which Nokia has a stake, offers the technology back-up for YES Bank. Obopay charges two per cent of the value of payments as commission, except for utility bills, where the payment would be between Rs 5 and Rs 10 a transaction.