Open Network For Digital Commerce:
The government has launched the pilot phase of Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) with an aim to “democratise” the country’s fast growing digital e-commerce space that is currently dominated by the two U.S.-headquartered firms — Amazon and Walmart.
- ONDC is a freely accessible government-backed platform that aims to democratise e-commerce by moving it from a platform-centric model to an open network for buying and selling of goods and services.
- Under ONDC, it is envisaged that a buyer registered on one participating e-commerce site (for example, Amazon) may purchase goods from a seller on another participating e-commerce site (for example, Flipkart).
- Presently, buyers and sellers have to be on the same app for a transaction which happens through the same platform. For example, a buyer needs to go to Amazon, to buy a product from a seller on Amazon.
- It is a not-for-profit organisation that will offer a network to enable local digital commerce stores across industries to be discovered and engaged by any network-enabled applications.
- The open network concept extends beyond the retail sector, to any digital commerce domains including wholesale, mobility, food delivery, logistics, travel, urban services, etc.
- It is neither an aggregator application nor a hosting platform, and all existing digital commerce applications and platforms can voluntarily choose to adopt and be a part of the ONDC network.
- The ONDC aims at promoting open networks developed on open-sourced methodology, using open specifications and open network protocols, independent on any specific platform.
- Implementation of ONDC, which is expected to be on the lines of Unified Payments Interface (UPI) could bring various operational aspects put in place by e-commerce platforms to the same level.
- The project to integrate e-commerce platforms through a network based on open-source technology has been tasked to the Quality Council of India.
- Open source refers to a software program or platform with source code that is readily accessible and which can be modified or enhanced by anyone.
- Open source access grants users of an application permission to fix broken links, enhance the design, or improve the original code.