Australians will now be able to make instant electronic payments at any time of the day, with the launch of the New Payments Platform (NPP) on 14 February.
The new platform will make payments faster and simpler for consumers and businesses. Australians will be able to transfer money to each other instantly, at any time, on any day of the week, including weekends and public holidays.
The way people and businesses spend and receive money has changed, with Australians now used to fast, online and mobile experiences. Despite this, for a long time transfers between different bank accounts has taken up to three days.
Customers will now be able to pay businesses securely, split restaurant bills with their friends, and pay a tradesperson instantly. They can also include more information with their payments, such as additional text, invoices and receipts.
The NPP has been collaboratively designed and built by 13 key Australian financial institutions, including the Reserve Bank of Australia and the major banks. Initially, around 60 banks, building societies and credit unions will be connected to the NPP, with more to connect over the coming months.
Bank customers will be contacted with details of when and how they can access the new services. For access they must nominate a PayID code, such as a phone number, email address or ABN, to identify them.
The NPP will also provide the infrastructure for new and innovative payment services. The first of these, Osko, is already operating. Osko is an extension of BPAY, but whereas BPAY is for paying bills, Osko is for a wider range of money transfers. Over fifty financial institutions are already using Osko.
At this time customers of the Commonwealth Bank and the Teachers Mutual Bank have full access to NPP. Bendigo Bank staff and some customers have access now, and all customers will get access within the next month.
NAB has also said customers will have access within the month. ANZ has said only that the bank will launch a pilot program with its staff sometime soon. Westpac will also trial the platform with a small group before opening it up to all customers.
Further information is available at the NPPA website, www.nppa.com.au, or from individual financial institutions.