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Digitalise Your Life While in India: Useful Apps You Should Have on Your Smartphone

For over haft a decade, I have witnessed the fast digitalisation in India especially in the main cities like new Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai, Kolkata etc. Digitalisation occurred not only in public government offices which reduced paper works by introducing paperless online services (e-governance) but not in the commercial arena (e-commerce). For instance, the digitalisation of FRRO immensely helps foreigners who stay in India to save their time in queue. Now foreigner registration is done instantly from a personal computer.

E-commerce, on the other hand, has grown not only in India but worldwide. In India, private companies created many mobile apps to connect with their customers. Here, I personally selected some important apps which may be used in daily life.

What I like most about online shopping or mobile apps is the promotion, discount coupon and cashback. So, the following are lists of online shopping apps with a brief introduction of each of them. With all these apps installed on your smartphone, I believe, your life is digitalised.

Wallet Apps

The first group of apps is a wallet which is required for the online transaction. We traditionally use cash in the market. With the help of wallet apps, no cash is needed. They are just like real wallets. While the real wallets are used to keep cash online wallets are used to load balance from your bank account. Hence, you need to have a bank account for a seamless online mobile payment.

Paytm: One of the most popular mobile wallets is Paytm. Paytm ("Pay-T-M", pronounced similar to ATM) is based out of NOIDA SEZ, India. Founded by Mr Vijay Shekhar Sharma nine years ago, Paytm offers online use-cases like mobile recharges, utility bill payments, travel, movies, and events bookings as well as in-store payments at grocery stores, fruits and vegetable shops, restaurants, parking, tolls, pharmacies and education institutions with the Paytm QR code. As of January 2018, Paytm is valued at $10 billion. As per the company, over 7 million merchants across India use this QR code to accept payments directly into their bank account. The company also uses advertisements and paid promotional content to generate revenues. Click here to download.

PhonePe: PhonePe is headquartered in Bengaluru, India. It was founded in December 2015, by Sameer Nigam, Rahul Chari and Burzin Engineer. PhonePe app went live in August 2016 and was the first payment app built on Unified Payments Interface (UPI). Using PhonePe, users can send and receive money, DTH, recharge mobile, data cards, make utility payments, buy gold and shop online and offline. In addition, PhonePe also allows users to book Ola rides, pay for Redbus tickets, order food on Freshmenu, eat, fit and avail Goibibo Flight and Hotel services through micro apps on its platform. PhonePe is accepted as a payment option across 5 million offline and online merchant outlets covering food, travel, groceries, movie tickets etc. The app crossed 100 million user mark in June 2018 and also crossed 2 billion transactions in April 2019. Click here to download.

MobiKwik: MobiKwik was founded by Bipin Preet Singh and Upasana Taku in April 2009 and is based in Gurgaon, Haryana. Customers add money to an online wallet that can be used for payments. In 2013 the Reserve Bank of India authorized the company's use of the MobiKwik wallet, and in May 2016 the company began providing small loans to consumers as part of its service. The company launched its MobiKwik Lite mobile app in November 2016, designed for users of older 2G mobile networks and for those in areas with poor internet connectivity. In November 2016, the company reported having 1.5 million merchants using its service and a user base of 55 million customers. Sign up with MobiKwik & use my referral code 38QYXF. You will get 100.0 SuperCash when you add ₹ 50.0 to your wallet. http://bit.ly/ReferMk

Amazon Pay: Amazon Pay is an online payments processing service that is owned by Amazon. Launched in 2007, Amazon Pay uses the consumer base of Amazon.com and focuses on giving users the option to pay with their Amazon accounts on external merchant websites. The service is available in many eighteen countries including India.

Google Pay: Google Pay (stylized as G Pay; formerly Pay with Google and Android Pay) is a digital wallet platform and online payment system developed by Google to power in-app and tap-to-pay purchases on mobile devices, enabling users to make payments with Android phones, tablets or watches. It is currently available in many countries including India (2018).

It is worthy to note that digital payments have increased remarkably in the post-demonetisation launched by Modi's government on 8 November 2016.

Taxi/Caps Apps

Nowadays, you don't have to own a car to ride a car. Caps are everywhere in the cities in India. You can call one of them right from your smartphone. Here, I'd like to introduce only two fiercely rival taxi/caps apps you should have on your smartphone to make your life easy.

Uber: Uber is an American multinational transportation network company (TNC) offering services that include peer-to-peer ridesharing, ride service hailing, food delivery, and a bicycle-sharing system. The company is based in San Francisco (USA) and has operations in over 785 metropolitan areas worldwide. Its platforms can be accessed via its websites and mobile apps. Uber entered India in 2013, whose services are available in 36 cities. It offers a cheaper ride rate in comparison to Ola. To claim your free gift, sign up using this link: https://www.uber.com/invite/khathbue

Ola: Ola Cabs (stylised as OLΛ), is an Indian transportation network company (TNC) offering services that include peer-to-peer ridesharing, ride service hailing, taxi and food delivery. The company is based in Bengaluru, Karnataka, India and was developed by ANI Technologies Pvt. Ltd. Ola Cabs was founded in December 2010 as an online cab aggregator in Mumbai and is now based in Bangalore. As of 2018, the company has expanded to a network of more than 10,00,000 vehicles across 169 cities offering cabs, auto-rickshaws, and even two-wheelers. Special to Ola is that it offers entertainment on the move with internet-connected LCD at the back seats.

For both the apps, you can pay by cash or by mobile wallets such as Paytm and MobiKwik.

Travel Apps

With these apps, you can travel around the world without any agent. they provide online travel services including flight tickets, domestic and international holiday packages, hotel reservations, and rail and bus tickets.

MakeMyTrip: MakeMyTrip Limited is an Indian online travel company founded in 2000, headquartered in Gurugram, Haryana. As of 31 March 2018, the company has 14 company-owned travel stores in 14 cities, over 30 franchisee-owned travel stores in 28 cities, and counters in four major airports in India. MakeMyTrip has offices in New York, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Phuket, Bangkok, and Dubai. Sign up for the MakeMyTrip App and get ₹150 for your next travel booking. You'll also get an Experiences voucher worth ₹100. Use my code 7phh0 while signing up. Click on http://app.makemytrip.com/7phh0-d2

Cleartrip: Founded in 2006, Cleartrip (previously known as Cleartrip Travel Services Private Limited) is a global online travel company, headquartered in Mumbai. The company operates an online travel aggregator website for booking flights and train tickets, hotel reservations, and activities in India and the Middle East countries. It has offices across India, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

Yatra: Yatra.com is an Indian online travel agency and travel search engine. It is based in Gurugram, Haryana. It was founded by Dhruv Shringi, Manish Amin and Sabina Chopra in August 2006. In April 2012, it became the second-largest online travel service in India, with a 30 per cent share of the ₹370 billion (US$5.4 billion) market for online travel-related transactions. It launched a "holiday-cum-shopping card" with State Bank of India (SBI), India's largest bank.

Shopping Mall Apps

Amazon: Amazon.com, Inc. (/ˈæməzɒn/), is an American multinational technology company based in Seattle, Washington that focuses on e-commerce, cloud computing, digital streaming, and artificial intelligence. It is considered one of the Big Four technology companies along with Google, Apple, and Facebook. Amazon acquired Junglee in 1998, and the website Junglee.com was launched in India in February 2012 as a comparison-shopping website. It curated and enabled searching for a diverse variety of products such as clothing, electronics, toys, jewellery and video games, among others, across thousands of online and offline sellers. Millions of products are browse-able, whereby the client selects a price, and then they are directed to a seller. In November 2017, Amazon closed down Junglee.com and the former domain currently redirects to Amazon India. Amazon highly recommended for online book shopping.

Flipkart: Flipkart Internet Private Limited is an e-commerce company based in Bengaluru, India. Founded by Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal in 2007, the company initially focused on book sales, before expanding into other product categories such as consumer electronics, fashion, and lifestyle products. The service competes primarily with Amazon's Indian subsidiary and the domestic rival Snapdeal. As of March 2017, Flipkart held a 39.5% market share of India's e-commerce industry. Flipkart is significantly dominant in the sale of apparel (a position that was bolstered by its acquisitions of Myntra and Jabong.com) and was described as being "neck and neck" with Amazon in the sale of electronics and mobile phones. Flipkart also owns PhonePe.

Snapdeal: Snapdeal is an Indian e-commerce company based in New Delhi, India. The company was started by Kunal Bahl and Rohit Bansal in February 2010. As of 2014, Snapdeal had 3,00,000 sellers, over 3 crore products across 800+ diverse categories from over 1,25,000 regional, national, and international brands and retailers and a reach of 6,000 towns and cities across the country.

Grocery Apps

BigBasket: bigbasket.com (Innovative Retail Concepts Private Limited) is India’s largest online food and grocery store. With over 18,000 products and over a 1000 brands in our catalogue you will find everything you are looking for, right from fresh Fruits and Vegetables, Rice and Dals, Spices and Seasonings to Packaged products, Beverages, Personal care products, Meats. Choose from a wide range of options in every category, exclusively handpicked to help you find the best quality available at the lowest prices. Select a time slot for delivery and your order will be delivered right to your doorstep in most cities in India. Amazon also sells grocery though with limited availability.

It was founded in October 2011 with its headquarter in Bengaluru. Its founders are Hari Menon, VS Sudhakar, Vipul Parekh, Abhinay Choudhari, and VS Ramesh.

Food Apps

Swiggy: Using Swiggy, you can order food & beverages online from restaurants near & around you. They deliver food from your neighbourhood local joints, your favourite cafes, luxurious & elite restaurants in your area, and also from chains like Dominos, KFC, Burger King, Pizza Hut, FreshMenu, Mc Donald’s, Subway, Faasos, Cafe Coffee Day, Taco Bell, and more. Exciting bit? They place no minimum order restrictions! Order in as little (or as much) as you’d like.

It was founded in 2014 by Sriharsha Majety, Nandan Reddy and Rahul Jaimini. Service is currently available in main cities such as Bangalore, Hyderabad, Delhi, Gurgaon, Nagpur, Jaipur, Coimbatore, Chandigarh... Register on Swiggy with J0NZME and earn Rs. 100. Download on m.onelink.me/849102e8.

Zomato: Zomato is an Indian restaurant search and discovery service founded in July 2008 by Deepinder Goyal and Pankaj Chaddah. It currently operates in 24 countries. It provides information and reviews of restaurants, including images of menus where the restaurant does not have its own website and also online delivery. It has 8 crores (80 million) monthly active users. By 2011, Zomato launched in Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Pune and Kolkata.

Uber Eat: Uber Eats is an American online food ordering and delivery platform launched by Uber in 2014 and based in San Francisco, California. It is also available in India as part of Uber cabs.

Food delivery service provided by these apps may not be available in your city.

Restaurant Apps

Dineout: As India’s largest dining out platform, Dineout helps more than 9 million diners every month to discover restaurants, get great discounts of up to 50% Off and 1+1 offers on food, drinks and buffets, reserve a table, pay restaurant bills to get cashback and view restaurant menus, reviews, photos across 35,000 restaurants in Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Pune, Chennai, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Chandigarh, Goa, Jaipur, Nagpur, Ludhiana, Kochi & Surat. Install to get maximum savings at your favourite restaurants.

Hey! I’ve unlocked exclusive 1+1 deals at 1000+ restaurants with my Gourmet Passport membership on the Dineout app! Use my referral code & get 20% off on membership AND 200 credits when you sign up on Dineout! https://bnc.lt/6ZXm/rCwGhNthaZ

Buy & Sell Apps

Using these below apps, you can buy and sale old or second-hand items for free, no commission charge.

OLX: OLX Group is a global online marketplace (headquartered in Amsterdam, and owned by South African media and technology group Naspers), founded in 2006 and operating in 45 countries. The OLX marketplace is a platform for buying and selling services and goods such as electronics, fashion items, furniture, household goods, cars and bikes. In 2014, the platform reportedly had 11 billion page views, 200 million monthly active users, 25 million listings, and 8.5 million transactions per month.

In India, about 90% of its listings come from used mobile and electronics, used home and household goods, and used cars & bikes.

Quikr: Quikr is an Indian classified advertising platform. It was founded by Pranay Chulet and Jiby Thomas in 2008. Headquartered in Bangalore, Quikr has listings in over 900 cities in India in categories such as mobile phones, household goods, cars, real estate, jobs, services and education.

Search Apps

Justdeal: Justdial (sometimes stylised as JustDial or JD) is a company that provides local search for different services in India over the phone and online. Founded in 1996 by VSS Mani, the company is headquartered in Mumbai, India. In addition to its headquarters, Justdial has offices in Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chandigarh, Chennai, Coimbatore, New Delhi, Hyderabad, Jaipur, Kolkata, and Pune. In 2019 Justdial had 12,691 employees[citation needed] and a database of approximately 25.7 million listings and 500,838 active paid campaigns.

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