Amazon Underground, the new app for Android smartphones, offers a selection of apps, games and in-app content, all for free. It is designed to break Amazon into the mainstream on Android smartphones by increasing store distribution and customer acquisition. Consequently it means even greater choice on the Android platform.
Major app stores like Google Play dominate the mobile ecosystem. Google regulations state that all digital media and apps should use the store payment system to bill for digital goods using credit cards or carrier billing. With Android accounting for 78% of all smartphones shipped worldwide in Q1 2015 (IDC), Continue reading
Looking at just one of the world’s biggest app stores as an example, you can buy apps through Google Play in 136 countries worldwide, yet carrier billing is only available in 39 of those!
That means for operators in 97 countries, Google Play revenue is bypassing them and is instead being shared with credit card and gift voucher companies. Additionally, from a customer engagement perspective, their subscribers have less interaction with the operator brand and more with Visa or MasterCard. Finally, their customers have a more difficult user experience when they come to purchase their first game, app, in-app purchase or piece of music. Continue reading
- Carrier billing is coming to all Windows 10 devices including PC’s, tablets and smartphones
- Purchase uplift from carrier billing far exceeds Microsoft’s prediction of 8x
- Mobile operators will effectively become the payment processors for Microsoft’s massive, established software markets
- The opportunity for mobile operators is unprecedented
Reality of adding carrier billing
At the Build 2015 conference in San Francisco last week, Bango partner Microsoft made a number of game-changing announcements that for many may have gone unnoticed.
First they announced that carrier billing is coming to all Windows 10 devices, in recognition of its unique power to reach millions of people and enable simple payments worldwide. Importantly, this includes all non-mobile connected PC’s and tablets in addition to smartphones, all part of their Universal Windows Platform. Microsoft claim that “carrier billing will result in an 8x increase in purchases”, but just how accurate or realistic is that number and what does this mean for mobile operators?
Also of importance is the introduction of subscription payments, which will build longer term customer engagements and deliver significant ongoing growth in value. Crucially it will also allow the latest subscription products, like Microsoft Office 365, to be sold online with carrier billing.
Microsoft claims a primary focus for carrier billing is to grow purchases in countries where credit cards are not common. Bango notes that over 90% of app store purchases already come from Direct Carrier Billing in countries like Indonesia. This can result in sales far exceeding Microsoft’s prediction of 8x. Bango typically sees between a 20x and 200x increase depending on the store and market. Continue reading
Mobile payment is increasingly in the headlines as major brands all develop their strategies and look to gain market share, which has resulted in a wide array of new payment innovations being announced.
When looking at Bango Payment, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay or Android Pay it’s easy to get confused.
- Smartphone wallets like Apple Pay, Samsung Pay or Android Pay are designed for buying physical goods – they increase the convenience of paying in-store using your credit card or bank account without the need to carry your physical wallet in addition to your smartphone.
- Bango enables internet (app store, web etc.) payments to be completed simply, securely and efficiently. Without the customer needing to own a credit card, or even have a bank account.
App stores understand that Direct Carrier Billing massively increases their customer’s ability to pay for apps and digital content. Google Play offers carrier billing with 67 mobile operators, while Microsoft lists 80. But with over 700 mobile operators worldwide, this only represents around 10% of the full potential, or 20% if you only focus on the most financially viable markets.
This is because lighting up carrier billing involves much more than just a technical integration. App stores need to perform market evaluation, planning and a range of launch processes – all of which are protracted and over-dependent on repetitive processes for each new billing route. Continue reading
Samsung has announced further commitment to mobile payments this month with the acquisition of Burlington, Massachusetts, based LoopPay.
“Through this deal we can significantly accelerate our mobile commerce efforts,” said David Eun, Executive Vice President of Samsung’s global innovation centre.
Identified as one MEF’s “10 Key Mobile Trends for 2015”, carrier billing is a major driver behind the global growth in digital content sales. Carrier billing enables consumers to buy apps, games, music and other content by charging the cost to their mobile bill, in one or more taps. Here, Richard Leyland, VP Marketing with Bango, the global leader in carrier billing, shares the 10 things you need to know: Continue reading