Fi (Fi.Money) and Jupiter (Jupiter.Money) are two very similar Indian NeoBank projects that came alive in 2021.
Both are very similar in their looks, approach and marketing. But as a banking app, there are some differences between Jupiter and Fi.
In this article, we are going to compare Jupiter and Fi side by side.
I’ll lay out some core differences as well as point out Pros n Cons between each Neobank so you can decide which one of these two is best for you.
Let’s begin with an Introduction for both, Fi and Jupiter.
What are Fi and Jupiter?
Fi and Jupiter are two Neobanks. Neobanks are all-digital banks that don’t have any physical branches, no paperwork and are available as a mobile app rather than a web app.
People who don’t have access to banks can really use Neobanks to get started. It’s easy to open an account, but the thing is, you don’t have an option to deposit cash. So a combination of a conventional bank account to store cash, but using a Neobank to transact should help a lot of unbanked people.
Both Fi and Jupiter started in 2019. They are very similar and almost identical in their marketing approach. Both target millennials and Generation Z audiences and preach that a new age of banking is coming with their product.
Jupiter as well as Fi, have partnered with Federal Bank. If you’re an existing Federal Bank account holder, you can open a Fi savings account.
But as of now, you can’t open a Jupiter savings account. You will be able to, but there is no tentative date from Jupiter on this issue.
One of the downsides of having the same bank as a partner bank for both Jupiter and Fi is you have no options and freedom of choice. Federal Bank, by no means, is a top-rated bank in terms of anything. However, they are reliable and have increased their focus on partnering with more Neobank projects in the future.
Still, this means you’re getting some level of security, capital protection and other services whether you choose Jupiter or Fi.
Can you open an account on both Fi and Jupiter?
I did a test, it turns out, no. You can’t open an account on Fi if you’re already a Jupiter user and vice versa. But there is a way, you can contact Federal Bank and request a KYC update to migrate from Fi to Jupiter and vice versa. Still, you can’t use both under the same KYC details simultaneously.
Can you open an account in Jupiter and Fi if you’re already a Federal Bank customer?
But with Fi, there is a way. You’ll get an error that says something like this:
Looks like you already have a Federal Bank account. Please contact Federal Bank and ask them to update your KYC details to proceed.
Fi allows you to complete a full KYC and open a savings account even if you’re a Federal Bank customer. You just need to follow some extra steps.
Jupiter seems to have an issue that doesn’t allow you to do the same. However, the Jupiter team has promised they are working on this issue and it should be resolved soon.
Comparing Jupiter and Fi Savings Account
Fi and Jupiter look pretty much the same on the front end. However, their savings account has a major difference.
Jupiter Savings Account – Limitations
On Jupiter, you currently get a limited account. Jupiter has two membership plans:
- Basic Membership
- Full Membership
Under the basic membership plan, you complete a minimal KYC process, without a video call. This means there are certain limitations, such as:
- You can’t transact more than 2 Lakh per annum.
- You can’t deposit more than 1 lakh in a single month.
There is no option to upgrade to the full membership Jupiter account. It’s coming soon, as well as other features such as Pots mini savings account and more jewels cashback.
To open an account with Jupiter, there is no video KYC as of now. All you need to do is have a PAN card and an Aadhaar Number ready. You’ll get a few codes on your registered mobile number and that’s it. You have your new Jupiter savings account ready.
The initial deposit has to be a minimum of INR 3000. You have to deposit this much in order to unlock the basic features of Jupiter.
This account is active right away. You can transact with its UPI once you’re done registering it with Axis bank – Jupiter’s UPI payments partner bank. It takes a few clicks to do that as well.
As soon as your Jupiter account gets activated, you’re given a virtual debit card as well. You can use this card to transact online just like you do with any other bank’s debit card.
To get a physical debit card, all you need to do is go to the settings and click on Apply for a physical debit card link. No fees at all. The debit card will be delivered to you in a week or less.
And I have to say, Jupiter’s debit card packaging looks cool.
You get a personal finance goals sheet along with it, a bunch of fun-looking stickers, and a sleek debit card.
It looks clean on the front – since there is only your name, Jupiter’s branding and the VISA PayWave sign at the front. Everything else, including the card number and Federal Bank’s branding, is at the back of the debit card.
Some might suggest they are wasting paper, but these same folks would get offended by their own friends. What can you do?
Fi Savings Account – No Limitations
With Fi, you get a zero-restrictions savings account. There is no membership; everyone gets the same account, same features, zero limitations.
You can deposit as much as you want, withdraw as much as you want, and save as much as you want.
Note that only up to 5 lakhs of your deposited money is insured by RBI. This is standard for any bank in India, so if you’re keeping more than that in your savings account, god bless.
You earn a 2.5% (floating) interest per annum on your Fi savings account. However, Fi has a smart deposit feature called Stash deposits.
Stash is a flexible deposit account that comes along with your Fi savings account. Much like ICICI iWish. You can create multiple Stash accounts yourself, and name them.
Let’s say you want to save for a new vacation next quarter. You can create a Stash named Vacation and deposit any amount, anytime. Once you reach your goal, you will also get a reward in form of Fi coins.
Fi coins can be converted into cash anytime you want.
When you save your money in the Stash Deposit, you can earn up to 5.1% interest per annum.
What You Get with a Fi Savings account:
With Fi, you get the following benefits:
- A free VISA Debit Card
- Free IMPS transfers (Jupiter charges you after 5 IMPS transactions in a month)
- Two free chequebooks a quarter (10 check leaves in total)
- Free Demand Drafts for up to ₹1 lakh per quarter
- Rewards on saving money (not spending – much better in my opinion)
Fi also comes with a nice smart search bar, an A.I. that allows you to ask questions and get precise answers about your finances. You can literally ask questions like, “Where did I spent most of my money this month?”.
And Fi will show you. It’s interactive and refreshing. Instead of scrolling through my statements, I can simply ask Fi and get the snapshot answer, find whatever transaction I’m looking for, see if I got that refund yet, and more.
Fi has another savings feature called FIT. Again, something inspired by iWish, but modified.
FIT allows you to set rules or auto-bot in Fi’s lingo. You can set a rule to save a fixed amount of money anytime you transact. This can be very specific as well, as you can also choose to save only when you transact with a particular merchant.
Using these rules you can also remind yourself of planned payments or even set up an automated payment routine.
Currently, Fi only works with Gmail accounts. So you will need to sign up via Gmail and give Fi permission to read your emails to track your expenses across all the merchant websites.
This comes with its own set of concerns, which I’ve talked about in my INDMoney review.
What You Get With a Jupiter Savings account:
With Jupiter, you get the following benefits:
- A free VISA Debit Card
- First 5 IMPS charges free – Then INR 5 for each IMPS transaction worth more than INR 1000 – 1 Lakh, increases to INR 10 after 1 Lakh.
- Free chequebook* – only the first chequebook with 5 leaves is free. Then additional charges apply
- One Demand Draft for free once a year
- Rewards on spending money – capped at INR 500 per month
With Jupiter, you get real-time insights into your money. Jupiter neatly breaks down your expenses into different categories and allows you to understand where your money is going.
Jupiter has its own iWish-inspired deposit feature – Pots.
These Pots are small, individual deposit accounts which you can use to save money for short-term goals.
With Pots, you can automatically deposit any amount of money towards a goal. You define your own goals when you create a new Pot. Once you reach your goal, you will also get a reward, which is great.
But unlike Fi, you don’t earn any interest in these Pots.
The interesting part about Jupiter is its rewards on UPI transactions. Every UPI transaction will earn you a 1% cashback.
Which isn’t something you’d find in Fi. Jupiter rewards you with cashback in the form of Jewels, which you can redeem for cash at any time. Rewards are capped at INR 500.
Jupiter also allows you to link to your other UPI-enabled bank account. Once you link them, you can view a consolidated liquid net Worth from the Jupiter app itself.
*Currently, the chequebook facility is unavailable since it’s a feature only verified KYC members can enjoy. And there is no way to verify your KYC as of now on the Jupiter app.
Fi Debit Card Has Advantages over Jupiter
Fi and Jupiter both offer a clean, sleek and unconventional-looking VISA debit card, for free. No maintenance or issuance charges.
But Fi Debit Card has two advantages:
- Federal Bank offers applicable on Fi Debit Card (Most of the time)
- Zero Forex charges (Big deal)
Jupiter has a forex charge of 3.5% + 18 GST applicable on international debit card transactions above INR 25,000, per month.
Keep in mind, if you’re an iOS/Mac user, Apple store purchases also levy forex charges.
Fi doesn’t charge anything on forex transactions. There’s no upper limit.
If you’re a freelancer or someone who transacts frequently on international stores, you will be better off using Fi Debit Card.
Another point to note is VISA benefits and Federal Bank promotional offers. Currently, Jupiter Debit Card doesn’t offer Federal Bank benefits or Visa Signature Benefits.
While Fi does.
However, Jupiter is working on bringing exclusive rewards for its customers.
When you visit these Neobanks websites, you see they emphasize too much on quick, friendly and faster-than-conventional-bank support.
However, this isn’t entirely true.
Neobanks don’t hold your money, process your transactions, issue your debit card, handle your complaints – they simply don’t have any authority over your money. So whatever happens with your transactions, the partner bank which hosts your account is responsible.
Sometimes, these Neobanks don’t get prompt answers/resolutions from their partner bank. They start stalling and giving you assurances. For example, let’s say your transaction failed at an online merchant and you’re waiting for your refund.
Days pass and you reach out to your Neobank support. They deliver on their quick support promise by promising you they are working on your query.
Who’s on the wrong side here?
Actually no one. Processing requests takes time. Banks process thousands of queries in each state every day. You need to understand this is going to be the same when you’re using a Neobank, regardless of what they tell you.
Anything apart from the transaction and debit card issues, you can expect a much faster resolution from your Neobank support compared to the conventional banking system.
Both Jupiter and Fi have chat, phone and email support. You can definitely expect faster responses and resolutions from each bank’s customer service.
Jupiter vs Fi – Verdict
You’ve got to make a decision since you can only choose either one of these two Neobanks. Once you signup for Jupiter, you can’t use Fi under the same KYC and vice versa.
Some of you might be able to; some may not. I’ve heard from many of my subscribers and audience that they could use both.
So let me breakdown 5 important points where Fi and Jupiter differ:
- Jupiter is much more community-driven – expect new features sooner and faster resolution to problems. On the other hand, Fi has a tremendously competent team behind it, very promising and capable of making Fi even better in the coming months.
- You earn the same interest on both Neobanks, get a free debit card, chequebook and amazing in-app experience. However, Jupiter is currently a limited savings account and additional charges on IMPS/NEFT/RTGS transactions. Fi doesn’t charge anything on IMPS, RTGS or NEFT transactions.
- Fi debit card has zero forex charges, whereas Jupiter has a standard 3.5% charge for each international transaction.
- Both have nice deposit account features. Jupiter as Pots, Fi has Stash. You can automatically save small amounts for future goals and get rewarded as well. However, Fi pays you a 5.1% interest on these Stash deposits. And Pots feature is currently not available for anyone, since there is no option to upgrade to a full Jupiter membership.
- Better-than-conventional-bank support. Fi has a nice A.I. assistant to help you quickly find answers to usual finance-related questions. Jupiter has great UI and categorization features, with a Mutual Funds Portfolio Analyzer coming soon.
When you look at both, Jupiter and Fi, there isn’t much difference.
Whether you choose Fi or Jupiter, your money is going to Federal Bank. You’re getting a VISA debit card and a smart, intuitive, digital banking experience through your smartphone.
For me, the clear winner is Fi. Their app is much more stable, they are far better in terms of features and they have a close-to-finished product. There isn’t any specific area where Jupiter can really beat Fi.
Both Fi and Jupiter are now available on iOS as well.
Just make sure you’re not making these Neobanks your primary bank. Certainly not for getting paid from your business, including PayPal, Payoneer, etc.
Let me know which one you choose Jupiter or Fi?