Bango and Costa Coffee – shop of the future

As a member of Cambridge Wireless, Bango were invited to submit a proposal outlining how our technology could be deployed by Costa Coffee for the “coffee shop of the future”. Over 50 submissions by local, national and international companies were considered by a selection committee. 10 (actually 13) finalists were chosen to present in Cambridge to Senior Executives from Costa Coffee and a judging panel that included representatives from Google, Amazon, Intel and the Cambridge Judge Business School.

Bango was part of the final 13; the other finalists were from, Climate Edge, Conigital, GeoSpock,, MakersCafe, Misha Pay, Novalia, Pavegen, Tenzo, TrueAI and Zapper.

The remit for the day was to take a written pitch that had been submitted for consideration and build on the idea, by working with mentors from a number of consultancy companies, brought in by Costa (for example Fujitsu, Intel, Cambridge Design Partnership, plus a whole load of experts from Costa). Other people were on hand, for example cost and analysis experts and a great illustrator to make ideas come to life. Continue reading

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Carrier billing – Moving into the mainstream

The announcement by Amazon, KDDI and NTT DOCOMO this week that carrier billing is being offered to Japanese customers in the Amazon retail store is the most important achievement for this ubiquitous “alternative” payment method in its 20 year history.


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The evolution of Android carrier billing: 900 Million and counting

Google has updated the world with the news that nearly 1 in every 8 people on the planet can pay on the internet using Direct Carrier Billing (DCB). The headline from the recent annual “I/O” conference stated that 900 Million Android phones are now capable of using DCB to pay for content and services from the Google Play store.

Google 900 million

Google I/O announcement discussing DCB

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Windows 10 – The 1 Billion device mark cannot be far away

News this week from Microsoft that Windows 10 is now running on 500 million active devices certainly registers on the scale in 2017, although not yet at the level of Android, in the billions. Nonetheless this is an impressive milestone to achieve. It also represents the fastest growth of any version of this ever-green operating system, even without a Microsoft mobile device to boost the numbers.

Microsoft has done a great job on the user experience for Windows 10. By unifying the interface across devices and integrating the apps and store experiences, it can comfortably engage with customers whose online habits have been fashioned by Amazon and other internet giants. Free Windows 10 downloads, bite-sized purchasing on the Xbox Continue reading

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Webinar: App store carrier billing users spend more across all operator services

Leading industry players in the app store ecosystem took part in the recent Bango webinar hosted by the Mobile Ecosystem Forum (MEF), discussing:

  • Does offering carrier billing for third party services cannibalizes operator revenues from traditional services
  • How carrier billing segments the subscriber base, identifying high spending customers
  • Why carrier billing is an essential payment method for operators

The latest carrier billing market stats and industry insights were shared. Evidence and analysis showed how app store carrier billing users spend more across all operator services. Additional benefits for operators were identified, including how carrier billing provides a tool for increasing customer satisfaction through unique insights and segmentation. Continue reading

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Monumental days in app store gaming lead to record-shattering year

It’s no stretch to declare 2016 as the most significant year for the app stores since their launch nearly 10 years ago. Nintendo finally dipped their toes into the ocean of mobile apps, both indirectly through Niantic’s Pokémon Go and through the mobile debut of everyone’s favourite Italian plumber in Super Mario Run, developed by Nintendo themselves. Major games companies also expanded their footprint, with Supercell, Machine Zone and other leading app store game developers both releasing new titles and improving their existing, huge revenue generators.

With so many landmark app store moments over the past 12 months, we have collated the ‘big days’ which shaped the app store in 2016:  Continue reading

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MEF Connects Indonesia: What will be big for mobile in 2017?

Bango spoke at the recent MEF Connects event in Jakarta, Indonesia joining the panel session to discuss hot trends in the mobile space, mobile payments as a whole and the ‘next wave’ for the Indonesian mobile ecosystem. Here are the highlights from the event.

Randy Pangalila, Group Head of Mobile Financial Services at Indosat Ooredoo opened the event at the stunning Grand Hyatt hotel Jakarta with a keynote speech on the Indonesian smartphone market, particularly highlighting the stunted growth of banking. With a 2% Year on Year growth of credit card penetration, a total of 3.2% of the population owning a credit card, the lack of banking in the region has limited the options, or even made users unable to participate with the digital ecosystem. Randy led with an anecdote of losing his ATM card 2 years ago which he is yet to replace, the Indonesian market has moved beyond banking, the country has become cash and e-money reliant. Alternative payment options are opening, with a range of mobile payments solutions such as Direct Carrier Billing, or Indosat’s own mobile wallet solution Dompektu easing the issues of the banking system and allowing Indonesian users to pay for digital content seamlessly.

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Turning growth in mobile data usage into greater revenues

gsma-mobile-360-middle-eastBango and du Telecom keynote session at Mobile 360 Series Middle East

It’s conference season again and last week it was the turn of Dubai who hosted the 36th GITEX (Gulf Information Technology Exhibition) event, which saw 4,000+ global technical leaders from 50+ countries converge on the city to talk tech.

The GSMA took the opportunity to co-locate their highly successful “Mobile 360 Series” (essentially a mini Mobile World Congress Barcelona) following similar, recent events in Tanzania, Mexico and this week’s event in Delhi.

Bango was invited to participate as a keynote speaker at Mobile 360 Series, co-presenting alongside UAE operator du Telecom in the OTT & Media session. Continue reading

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Carrier Billing – Got to catch them all!

The urgency to get direct carrier billing deployed and active, to avoid long term loss of access to high spending users has been brought into sharp focus over the last few weeks by the big surge in revenues coming in to app stores from the arrival of Pokémon Go.

Where carrier billing is deployed, the Pokémon Go users that decide to buy lures, more balls or incense can just click a button and pay. Many of these users will be first time buyers. They won’t have the time or inclination to get out a credit card – even if they have one.

Where carrier billing is not yet available, there will be an option to use credit cards or gift cards. Previous studies have shown that when content is compelling – and Pokémon Go certainly seems to be in that category, the number of users entering credit cards in developed markets soars from 8% up to as many as 25%.

Potentially a quarter of users at that point – who would almost certainly have been initiated to carrier billing – are lost for months if not years – and along with them all the downstream revenue.

With Pokémon Go it could be that children at that point get hold of their parents credit card details or buy prepaid credit cards to feed their habit. The permanent loss of carrier billing could be worse.

Card Loss

Using the standard Harris-Goldberg model, assuming 25% permanent attrition, the impact of a delay in DCB will be substantial and permanent.

The message: If you are deploying DCB, deploy it quickly before users get into the habit of using workarounds.



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New mobile game breaks revenue records

Pokémon GO rocketed into the mobile ecosystem last week, claiming the record as the fastest mobile game to hit the top spot, taking over from Clash Royale. Four days after launch, Pokémon GO became the number one mobile game in terms of revenue on Android, according to  App Annie.

On June 6, Pokémon GO was officially launched in Google Play and Apple App Store in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. Billed as the world’s first “real world gaming” platform, Pokémon GO combines smartphone capabilities and location technology to create a gaming platform where players explore the game, along with the real world. Players travel to physical sites in the real world to collect and harvest Poke balls and eggs in the mobile game. It may not sound like an obvious recipe for success but Pokémon GO is an instant phenomenon. Continue reading

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