TRAI Wants Free USSD Messages for All Users to Encourage Digital Payments


The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has issued a proposal to make Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) messages free for all mobile customers in the country. USSD messages are used by many operators and banking services, often on feature phones that do not have access to the Internet. The proposal seeks to reduce the cost of USSD messages from a maximum of 50 paise to zero. The regulator cited lower call and SMS prices as the reason for the proposal to remove charges for mobile customers.

one in Statement on 24 November spotty by Telecom Talk, Try It said the proposal to make USSD messages free for all users is based on the recommendations of a High Level Committee on Deepening Digital Payments (CDDP). reserve Bank of India To promote digital payments in the country

USSD messages are also used by telecom operators to enable feature phone users to check their balance and enable services without access to the Internet.

TRAI said it has analyzed the issue from the Department of Financial Services (DFS) on the request of the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and the regulatory body is of the view that it is necessary to protect the interests of USSD users and promote digital financial inclusion. There is a need for rationalization of USSD charges. , The Telecom Tariffs (61st Amendment) Order, 2016 had earlier reduced the USSD-based tariff ceiling from Rs. 1.50 from the current 50 paise per session.

TRAI said, “The Authority proposes to modify the framework by prescribing ‘zero’ charges for USSD session for mobile banking and payment service for USSD based mobile banking and payment services, while keeping the remaining items of USSD unchanged.” Trai said. The draft amendment order has been published on TRAI’s website, and the regulatory authority has invited stakeholders to send written comments before December 8, according to TRAI.


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As a writer on technology with Gadgets 360, David Delima has an interest in open-source technology, cyber security, consumer privacy, and loves to read and write about how the Internet works. David can be contacted via email at [email protected], as well as on Twitter at @DxDavey.
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