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Ericsson IPX is a division of Ericsson which provides a range of payment and messaging solutions to mobile content suppliers. In the mobile content world to date the vast majority of sales have taken place via the operator’s branded portals, which offer users a simple ‘click-to-buy’ experience with the cost being charged to their mobile phone bills. There has been an explosive growth in the availability of content ‘off-portal’ on independent WAP sites on the mobile internet. However these sites have not been able to offer the same simple buying experience and as a result sales growth has not be as large as hoped. Ericsson IPX was looking to provide a billing solution which offered off-portal content sales the same simple user experience as the operator portals.
In June 2006 Ericsson IPX announced that it was delivering WAP billing solutions to its customers in the UK, so allowing a simple click-to-buy purchase experience for end users. Subsequently IPX have built on this functionality by implementing Payforit - a mobile payment scheme being promoted to provide a safe and trustworthy environment for consumers buying mobile content. It benefits from cross-operator support and comprises a “Trusted Mobile Payment Framework” governing how merchants, accredited payment intermediaries and operators co-operate to make mobile payments a secure and seamless process.
IPX has already deployed Payforit across some 11 content partners, including Red Circle, Samsung, Gamefederation and Sony Ericsson, who are delivering in excess of 130 services. The initial results have been extremely positive for Ericsson IPX’s customers with mobile content partners seeing an increase in sales of up to 20% and at least 5% for one off payments when compared with like-for-like sales by the same vendors using unbranded systems.