ONDC to democratise e-commerce and help protect small businesses
30th Mar, 2022
Union Commerce and Industry Minister recently said Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) would democratize e-commerce and will protect small businesses by granting them equal opportunity.
About Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC):
- Open Network for Digital Commerce christened ONDC is globally first-of-its-kind initiative that aims to democratise Digital Commerce, moving it from a platform-centric model to an open-network.
- It aims to ensure that small retailers get an equal opportunity to engage with big firms, protect their businesses and serve customers with modern ways of delivery system.
- As UPI is to the digital payment domain, ONDC is to e-commerce in India.
- It will enable buyers and sellers to be digitally visible and transact through an open network, no matter what platform/application they use.
- ONDC received its certificate of incorporation as a private sector non-profit company in December, 2021.
- A number of established companies have integrated with the platform.
- The platform will provide opportunities for new start-ups to start creating a network of sellers, provide service to local areas, and increase competition.
Aims and objectives:
- ONDC aims at promoting open networks developed on open-sourced methodology, using open specifications and open network protocols independent of any specific platform.
- ONDC is expected to digitize the entire value chain, standardize operations, promote inclusion of suppliers, derive efficiencies in logistics and enhance value for consumers.
- Making software or a process open-source means that the code or the steps of that process is made available freely for others to use, redistribute and modify.
- An open-source project means that anybody is free to use, study, modify and distribute the project for any purpose.
- These permissions are enforced through an open-source licence easing adoption and facilitating collaboration.
- For example, while the operating system of Apple’s iPhones — iOS — is closed source, meaning it cannot be legally modified or reverse engineered.
- Google’s Android operating system is open-source, and therefore it is possible for smartphone OEMs such as Samsung, Xiaomi, OnePlus, etc to modify it for their hardware.