Paytm on Wednesday announced a new feature that will allow anyone to make payments using a Paytm wallet, regardless of whether or not they have a smartphone.
This will work even without a smartphone or the Paytm app.
You will still need a smartphone (or access to a PC) in order to create your Paytm account, and link it to your phone number – and of course to load funds into the wallet. However, to make payments on a day to day basis, you won’t require a smartphone or an Internet connection. All you require is working phone – even if it is a feature phone.
You can call 1800 1800 1234 to transact on Paytm.
To do this, Paytm has launched a toll free phone number – 1800 1800 1234 – you will have to call it from your registered mobile number in order to set your PIN. You’ll hear a voice message letting you know that you’ll get a call back to set the PIN.
You do not need an Internet connection for this feature.
After that, you can make payments by calling this number, typing in the phone number of the recipient, then the amount, and finally typing in your PIN for confirmation. You do not require a smartphone, or the Paytm app, or an Internet connection, to make use of this feature. Although it’s not the easiest method for making payments, there could be a number of situations where such a feature is useful.
For example, several of us have older relatives who still prefer to use feature phones for the simplicity of use. For such users, who are now forced to transact digitally owing to the demonetisation of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1000 notes, Paytm’s toll free number would be helpful. On the other hand, for people who are still using feature phones because they don’t have a smartphone, this number, along with a visit to a cyber cafe, could be very empowering. And of course, there are also people who might prefer to use this method rather than tap through multiple screens on an app.
This might just be because of the initial rush for signups, but it paints a worrying picture – if someone is trying to make a payment using this method, they might not have access to other forms of online payments, and so if the system fails due to the number being busy, it would be a huge problem.