Rival PhonePe’s daily app downloads on the Play Store, on the other hand, jumped to 5.5 lakh from 4.4 lakh during the same period. The BHIM app also found traction among users, with daily downloads during the first seven days of the month totalling 3.6 lakh. Google Pay’s app downloads touched close to 2 lakh. AppTweak said that the download estimates have an accuracy rate of about 85-90%.
“PhonePe’s share in app downloads had already been rising. The process got an extra push after Jan 31, following RBI’s directive on Paytm Payments Bank,” Karan Lakhwani, head of India at AppTweak, told TOI. Smaller players like MobiKwik also gained share, registering about 45,000 daily downloads on the Play Store. On Apple’s App Store, Paytm’s daily app downloads averaged about 8,000 compared to PhonePe’s and Google Pay’s 25,000 during Feb 1-7, the data showed.
PhonePe declined to comment. During the period, PhonePe saw the highest share of total downloads at about 40 lakh across both platforms, followed by BHIM at around 25 lakh downloads. Paytm lagged with about 11 lakh, the data showed. “We do not consider market reports as a reliable source. However, our internal report suggests a consistent growth in the past week,” a Paytm spokesperson said in response to queries.
Last week, RBI placed severe curbs on the operations of PPBL following lapses in compliance with the regulatory framework on KYC, creating scepticism among users. On Thursday, RBI said that the Paytm app will not be impacted by the recent order issued against PPBL, providing some relief to the company. One 97 Communication’s (Paytm parent) stock price closed at Rs 447 on the BSE on Thursday, down nearly 10%.
PPBL’s employees have started looking for new jobs amid uncertainty around the bank’s future, a senior employee with the firm said on condition of anonymity. “The company has said that jobs will not be lost and a way will be figured out but there’s no clarity on the process. If things get worse, it will not be possible to shift all people into other departments, especially those with compliance and risk-related roles,” the employee said, adding that PPBL has some 1,500-2,000 employees.
“Our senior leadership is in constant communication with all teams to ensure business continuity,” Paytm said.