Direct carrier billing platform payvia has struck a deal with Mobile-XL to brings its mobile payments technology to the company’s mobile browser designed for feature phones.
The Mobile-XL browser is a Java application that uses SMS to provide access to services such as Facebook, Twitter, email, games and news updates without requiring a data connection. The alternative technology is geared toward emerging markets like Africa and India where Internet access may be limited but feature phones are prevalent.
With the integration of payvia’s payments service, Mobile-XL users will be able to buy digital goods and services using their pre-paid phone account. In announcing the partnership, payvia CEO Darcy Wedd noted that fewer than a third of Africa’s 800 million mobile subscribers have access to traditional banking and credit card services, heightening the need for convenient mobile billing.
Mobile-XL says it works directly with carriers including Orange, MTN, Vodafone, Etisalat, Idea and Airtel and its browser has been downloaded 3.5 million times to date.