Some ideas are stupid. Mine have a strong tendency to fit into this category. However, from the darkness, sometimes beams a powerful beacon light. OK, I exaggerated a little bit. I meant a twinkly faded one. Anyhow, I’ll throw some of those meteoroids at the internet sky, and perhaps one will have a magnificent shooting star effect one day for some one. Sit belt on.
We are used to “prepaid” mobile phone accounts, where it’s easy to control costs. But this service is often offered by a particular carrier to meet the carrier own services.
A possible extension, is a global PrePay. This service can be tied to a user or even multiple users, rather than the user and it’s service provider. While still not a mobile payments or mWallet, it allows a user, family or a small business, to control costs and allocate monthly (or otherwise) money for various mobile communication expenses together, or even control each seperately (e.g. different pool for SMS, voice calls, internet, and roaming):
- A registry is created for families phones across multiple carriers, or a small business phones, or even a single person using multiple phones from possibly multiple carriers.
- A prepaid services is offered, where unlike the carrier provided one – it is “shared” across carriers.
- In addition it may even be provisioned to be shared across multiple users, e.g. the business partners, family members, etc.
- The prepaid amount may be further allocated to different applications (e.g. pool for SMS, pool for voice, pool for app download – or globally shared)
- When one of the eligible users deposit – all can benefit.
- When one consumes, overall balance is reduced
- Policies can further refine this to multiple needs, domains and solutions
Note: Direct integration to carrier prepaid solution as well as OTT are both feasible.
Some trivial use cases are:
- Setting mobile phone pre-pay allowance for a family.
- Setting media consumptions for multiple family members (one may use for iTunes music, other for android apps)
- Small business communication costs control
This is primarily a consumer service, but can be linked with service providers, or target Enterprises of a small scale.