Have you ever run short of cash to make a home delivery payment and there were no ATMs in the nearby vicinity? Amit Kumar has been in a similar situation many a times before. One he promptly remembers is when he was in college and used to order pizzas from Dominos.
He says, “Since we were in a remote area, even the nearest ATM machine was 2 kms away. We found ourselves borrowing money from friends too often. Sometimes even from security guards in our campus. A lot of my batch mates would ask the delivery guy why can’t they bring a card swiping machine.”
This is when the launch of payment system Square caught his attention, “I thought this is the answer. However, it didn’t take off in the same manner in India as it did in the USA.” That’s when he realized that there was an opportunity to solve a problem and Eashmart was born.
Eashmart, launched in December 2013, is a payment system where the POS payment device resides in the customers mobile phone ensuring that the no sensitive payment information is shared with the merchant.
How Eashmart Works
Let’s take the Pizza example. You have ordered a pizza and want to pay in cash, but when the pizza comes you realize you don’t have the cash on you, or maybe he doesn’t have balance change. As it was before, you’d have to run to the ATM, or borrow from a neighbour. With Eashmart, while placing an order, simply say that you’ll pay with Eashmart. You’ll receive a notification (SMS or smartphone). When your pizza comes, click on the notification, and make the payment. The app will show you a 4 digit PIN, tell this pin to the delivery boy. The delivery boy already knows this PIN. He confirms it, and gives you your pizza. The store is also notified of the payment immediately.
One of the advantages of the product is that it does not require merchants to buy any hardware or teach their delivery boys on how to use them.
Users need not save card details in the app to make a payment, even though the app has that feature available to make payments quicker. In case you have saved your card details and have lost your phone, you can call the service to block access to Eashmart from your phone, without affecting your account or your card data.
The product is considered a payment processor by the RBI, and the regulatory body requires such companies to be Payment Card Industry (PCI) compliant. The startup is already PCI Level 4 compliant and is finishing up the last stage of the PCI Level 1 compliance.
The service is currently live across 5 merchants in Delhi, Bangalore and Jaipur, and will expand to more cities and more merchants in the next few days.
Customers are not charged for using the service. For merchants the cost depends on their transaction volumes, and starts at 2.5% flat.
The mobile app is currently available only for Android devices. An iOS version will be launching soon.