An end to the frustration of reading those ultra small 16 digit pin numbers on the back of the paper recharge cards and waiting for the IVR. India’s top telecom operator Bharti Airtel has introduced an innovative recharge option that allows its customers to recharge using QR codes.

Airtel claims it to be the world’s first paper recharge coupon with a Quick Response Code (QRC) or QR based recharge. (Vodafone already introduced this type of QR code based recharge coupons in Qatar)

Do away with 16 digit PIN recharge, Airtel introduces QR Code based Recharge

The idea is simple, Airtel’s prepaid customers can buy recharge coupon from a retailer and then scratch to reveal the hidden QR code. Using once smartphone with a QR code reader app, scan the QR code and get recharge approved.

  • First install a QR code reader app on your Android or iOS smartphone (try the Google Goggles app)
  • Buy the recharge coupon and scratch to reveal the QR code,
  • Scan the QR code with the app
  • Finalise and approve recharge

Airtel has started the pilot phase of the project in Andhra Pradesh telecom circle, where its customers can buy Smart Pack on a recharge coupon of Rs 25 and will offer 2G/3G benefits on the same pack. With this Airtel is clearly targeting its internet savvy customers who use the internet recharge based Smart Packs.

As now smartphones adoption in India is skyrocketing, using QR codes to recharge seems to be a viable option. It’s anyway better than the 16 digit PIN code.

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