Zong 4G, Pakistan’s leading telecommunication company, which is part of China Mobile (CMCC) and the mobile technology company Fortumo are today announcing the launch of direct carrier billing on Google Play for both Zong 4G’s prepaid and postpaid customers. 35 million Zong 4G subscribers can now pay for apps and in-app content from the app store by charging purchases to their Zong 4G prepaid mobile balance or monthly phone bill.
Commenting on the partnership Zong 4G’s Spokesperson said, “As a company with the largest and widest 4G reach in Pakistan, Zong 4G has always been at the forefront of the country’s digital revolution. As part of our strategy of digitally empowering our customers, Zong 4G has partnered with Fortumo to launch direct carrier billing which will provide millions of our customers with the convenience to pay for apps and in-app content. We are confident that our customers will benefit greatly from this partnership which will enable them to harness the full potential of mobile applications”
“Pakistan is a rapidly growing smartphone market where Android is the dominant operating system. Carrier billing makes purchasing content from Google Play accessible to any Android device. We are excited about partnership with Zong 4G and are looking forward to growing revenue together,” added Taavi Krusell, VP of Carrier Sales at Fortumo.
Fortumo managed the Google Play integration project from end to end, utilizing its previous experience of connecting dozens of other telcos to Google. In addition to the technical setup (integrations and testing) Fortumo supports its telco partners with marketing advice on how to maximize consumer activations on the app store.
Fortumo also provides telcos, including Zong 4G, the access to Fortumo Insight. The real-time analytics tool allows telcos to monitor and evaluate the performance of their Google Play connection, in order to identify growth opportunities and areas where performance can be improved.
In Pakistan, only 21% of people have a bank account and credit card ownership is below 1%. At the same time, 43% of consumer mobile devices are smartphones. This means a large part of the population can access online content, but is unable to pay for premium content.
Carrier billing resolves this problem by allowing any consumer to deduct payments from their prepaid SIM card balance or charge it to their monthly phone bill. Additional information on carrier billing in Pakistan and other Asian markets can be found from Fortumo’s recent Asia market report.