Carrier Billing Is Another Way To Pay On Phones -- And It's Creating A Big Opportunity To Monetise Mobile Users

Carrier billing is another way mobile users can pay for goods via their phone. It adds the cost of the purchase — most often for digital goods — to consumers’ wireless bills, allowing for a virtually frictionless transaction.

The problem is that wireless carriers are still charging a lot of money for every carrier billing purchase made. But that is beginning to change now that mobile operators see there’s a big opportunity to earn a lot more money off of mobile purchases.

In emerging markets like India, where mobile penetration is high but lots of people lack credit cards, allowing users to add the cost of goods to their mobile bills could open up a big opportunity for merchants that sell digital content.

In a recent report, BI Intelligence finds that by 2017, carrier billing will account for 22% of mobile transactions, or $US13 billion. The report looks at how carrier billing is being updated for the mobile app age, now that carrier billing technology has made some giant leaps. The report explains how carrier billing works, who is using it, and whether or not it has the potential to catch on for physical goods, beyond the world of digital content.

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Here are some key points from the report:

In full, the report:

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