M-software firm in payment deal with Cable & Wireless

20 Nov 2003

Dublin-based mobile data service and payments provider Agile has launched the world’s first prepaid mobile data application payment service as part of a collaboration with Cable & Wireless in Guernsey.

The new payment service enables mobile phone customers to purchase a credit voucher from participating retailers, which is stored in a virtual wallet that is accessible through the user’s mobile phone. Users are provided with instant access to a range of data services such as advanced gaming, news and weather alerts, television soap updates, ringtones, logos and MMS applications. It is understood that the service enables services to be accessed at a cheaper rate than payments over premium rate numbers or SMS short codes.

The new Mpay service for the island of Guernsey was deployed over a three-month period in association with payment platform provider MoreMagic.

The Agile technology incorporates a complex reporting system to ensure that Cable & Wireless Guernsey has up-to-the-minute performance information on the status of transaction activity across account holders, voucher merchants, multiple time periods and value levels.

“Our plans for mobile payments were significantly different from those implemented by the UK operators, we are providing a solution that will provide customers with a flexible and transparent method of making purchases from their mobile handsets”, explained Cable & Wireless Guernsey’s mobile IS manager, James McEwan. “Through our investigations of the platforms being operated in the Far East, we were introduced to Agile. The Agile team took our original requirements and developed them to deliver a scalable and flexible platform that will act as a foundation for our future mobile payment services.”

Self-financed Agile was established in May this year and is located at the former WorldPort data centre in Blanchardstown where it hosts its applications for customers in Europe and the Far East.

Agile’s CEO Enda Kyne commented: “Although mobile payment platforms are already established in Asia, across Europe and the Middle East, we are seeing a ground swell of consumer demand for and expectation of wireless data services from their mobile phone operators. Cable & Wireless Guernsey is positioning itself as a pioneer in this sector with this new approach to subscriber payment for non-voice services, the applications of which are immense.

“It won’t be long before people are buying day-to-day consumer goods over their mobile phones or indeed transacting person-to-person mobile payments. We are witnessing a movement from a relatively immature market to a rapidly growing market as mobile phone operators and financial institutions position themselves for payment transactions enabled through mobile devices,” Kyne said.

By John Kennedy