Seamless Mobile Billing


Mobile devices such as smartphones have crossed into mainstream society. In many cases, these Web-connected cellphones are replacing other dedicated devices for navigation, fitness, and even gaming. Now, thanks to a number of movements in the mobile-payment industry, smartphones may even replace credit and debit cards—not to mention cash—as a primary mode of payment for digital content, which will open doors in markets such as connected TV.

One company, boxPAY,, offers an interesting mobile-payment processing solution that allows developers to bypass the credit card when building mobile-payment capabilities into a solution. Instead of requiring users to pay via credit card, boxPAY’s solution adds the charge to the consumer’s mobile bill or deducts it from a prepaid balance.

The solution is effective for young people who have a mobile device but not a credit card, and are looking to buy an app or make an in-app purchase. Similarly, the solution allows consumers in emerging markets to buy digital content via mobile device, even if they don’t have access to traditional banking services.

In fact, the company says its mobile-payments platform allows online merchants in more than 60 countries the ability to charge customers for digital content through a mobile phone instead of a credit card, extending their reach further than before.

“Credit cards and mobile wallets are not true global solutions, because the market penetration simply isn’t there,” say Iain and Gavin McConnon, cofounders of boxPAY. “But using boxPAY carrier payments, anyone with a mobile device becomes a customer.”

boxPAY now offers an in-app payment service for smart TVs, which it says will help developers monetize TV apps without requiring registration or a credit card. While the Internet-connected-TV sector is gaining momentum, companies like boxPAY believe the industry is held back in part by the cumbersome process of requiring consumers to register and enter payment information before downloading TV apps.

According to NPD In-Stat,, 100 million households will use smart, Web-enabled services on their TVs by 2016. Before this kind of adoption can happen, though, consumers need to believe the value add trumps potential drawbacks such as ease of use and security.

boxPAY says its service enables instant buying, helping to streamline the process of accessing and purchasing digital content. The solution verifies the transaction through the carrier, and then applies the cost of the app to the customer’s mobile phone bill or against a prepaid balance.

Regarding security, the McConnons say, “ … unless you are already inside of an application on your mobile device, in which case you simply have to click once to confirm a payment, a purchase requires a PIN code being sent to the user’s phone to verify the transaction. In either case, you must have your mobile device on your person in order to complete a purchase. This leaves very little room for error.” Therefore, they believe boxPAY can be more secure than entering in your credit card details and personal information online.

For smart-TV-app developers and TV manufacturers, boxPAY offers an SDK (software development kit) to integrate the payment option, ultimately opening the door for consumers who do not have a credit card (or who don’t care to use one) to participate in the transaction.

As connected devices continue to make life easier by offering Web access and realtime data while on the go, the array of services and solutions these devices offer are growing diverse. For companies looking to capitalize on these devices’ connected capabilities, the possibilities are nearly endless.

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Connected World Issue
June/July 2014
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