Paytm launched two new variants of its popular soundbox device – Music Soundbox and Pocket Soundbox
The new devices will follow a subscription model and the rent for them would remain between INR 1 to INR 150, depending on the merchant
Noting that most payment devices deployed in India are still made in the US or China, Vijay Shekhar Sharma called for a PLI scheme for local production of these devices
Fintech giant Paytm on Monday (July 31) launched two new variants of its popular soundbox device – Music Soundbox and Pocket Soundbox.
The new soundboxes were unveiled during a virtual event by Paytm CEO Vijay Shekhar Sharma and group president and COO Bhavesh Gupta.
The Music Soundbox enables merchants to play music via Bluetooth while waiting for payments. It is a normal soundbox that doubles up as a Bluetooth speaker. The music playback pauses when transactions are detected.
On the other hand, the Pocket Soundbox is a smaller, slimmer iteration of the original soundbox, which comes with a lanyard to receive payments on the go. According to Sharma and Gupta, the device can be used by merchants on the go, such as auto-rickshaw drivers, street vendors and delivery executives.
Sharma said the new soundboxes will also follow the subscription model. Gupta said the rent for the new soundboxes will remain between INR 1 to INR 150, depending on the merchant, with support for 11 languages.
The two 4G-powered devices are made in India, said the Paytm CEO.
Responding to an Inc42 query on expansion plans, Gupta said, “We have a runway of 3-5 years to keep expanding the product base.” He said there could be as many as 50 Mn soundboxes in the country by the end of the said period.
Meanwhile, Sharma also noted that most payment devices deployed in India are still made in the US or China and called for a production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme to promote domestic manufacturing of these devices.
“We made the product in India to be able to understand the nuances of the use cases of merchants in India. These nuances help us dominate the space,” said Gupta on the reasoning behind manufacturing Paytm soundboxes in India.
To be sure, Paytm has already placed 7.9 Mn payment devices across the country according to its performance update for Q1 FY24, making it one of the largest soundbox companies in the country. While the listed fintech giant was one of the earliest to launch such a device, it is now facing competition from the likes of PhonePe, Google Pay and other payments startups.
However, brokerage BofA Securities believes that the increasing competition won’t affect Paytm and it is well-placed to capitalise on its deep penetration in the soundbox segment.
Paytm reported a 44.5% year-on-year (YoY) decline in its consolidated net loss at INR 358.4 Cr in Q1 FY24 from INR 645.4 Cr in the year-ago period.
Shares of Paytm ended Monday’s session more than 5% higher at INR 801.60 on the BSE.