Thursday, 22 November 2007

Devil in detail

The really very useful Mobile Marketing Magazine carries this post today concerning PayforIt, the UK carriers project to phase out PSMS as a payment means for content. There is many a good intention behind this project but at ground level many mutterings from those being forced to use it. Beware the propoganda if you want a balanced view of its success.

First, companies are being told they must use the new system or not have their transactions fulfilled.

Second, effectively cartel pricing has meant that this is no cheaper and often more expensive than premium SMS.

Third, it often requires extra steps in the user flow for payment resulting in two cases known to me of a dramatic reduction in third party revenue.

Great concept but the operators need to work harder at being end consumer focused and on sharing any value with those subscribing to the service. Bango indicate significant savings in customer care: if so, why cannot the operators provide this cheaper than PSMS?

I have another post in draft concerning worrying signs that appear to have their roots in the fact that the operators control too many aspects of the value chain and are either implicitly (in this case) or explicitly in others abusing the position of access control to the end user.

This implicit instance is forgiveable but operators need to listen better to those focused intensely on the user experience.

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