A deeper look at mobile billing

Did you know there are currently two forms of mobile billing? It is identified as “direct operator mobile billing” and “direct-to-bill” payments. While both are simply referred to as mobile billing, they actually work very differently.

What is direct operator mobile billing?

According to billingviews.com, direct operator billing was highlighted in September last year when Facebook announced it would work with Bango to enable its users to charge their Facebook purchases directly to their mobile bills. It is a virtual way of paying for digital goods and services that are often (but not always) related to the mobile device.

Dr Windsor Holden observed the following in his white paper, Mobile Payments in the App Store Economy: Winning Strategies for Telcos: “For the operator, the storefront and the developer, Direct Carrier Billing is an increasingly attractive option. Storefronts and developers can monetise demographics which either do not possess credit cards or are unwilling to give out card details online; the operator can retain and enhance its role in the content value chain.”

Direct operator mobile billing can be used to buy digital goods like a paid app to virtual currency in a Facebook-based game.

What are direct-to-bill payments?

The alternative to credit and debit cards, direct-to-mobile payments is used to purchase retail or hard goods.

“The first phase of this would be, for example, paying for purchases from a web retailer like Amazon with a mobile direct-to-bill charge. But the next step happens in the real world, where people begin using mobile payment technology to utilize direct-to-bill charging as a form of payment in lieu of credit and especially debit cards,” says billingviews.com.

People don’t have to feel uncomfortable about giving their credit card details to stores anymore. With this type of mobile billing, the goods are charged to your mobile bill. Painless and fast!

Mobile billing in general is an easy way to pay for the things you want with less risk than paying with cash or cards. It only takes a few clicks and the transaction is done. The only disadvantage for the shopper (but advantage for the retailer) is that because it is so convenient people are likely to purchase more goods than they normally would.

Herman Cremer
A seasoned professional with 20 years of experience in digital & mobile solutions and advertising.

 

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