M-Payments and Internet personalization key VAS drivers in APAC

Two key VAS services being actively pursued by all APAC operators are Mobile Payments and Mobile and Internet Personalization, according to a recent APAC VAS
survey conducted by Amdocs and Coleman Parkes on 120 telecom executives from
mobile operators across Asia Pacific.

While 95 percent of respondents have an active mobile payments strategy, operator billing – a strategy that stresses billing on behalf of third parties including app stores and providers of virtual goods is key. App stores, prepaid and social media are the most pursued mobile payments segments, while the top three reasons for pursuing mobile payments were new revenue streams, customer retention and enhanced customer experience.

An overwhelming majority of respondents believe that operators should expect up to 15 percent revenue shares across the various mobile payments segments. The majority of respondents also believe they have a leg up on rival banks and credit card companies, making a play to own the mobile payments space, due to a majority unbanked population in these regions, and a majority believes that they should collaborate in mobile payments.

According to the survey, the biggest risks of not pursuing mobile payments
are failure to meet demand and marginalization.

Most mobile operators are confident their portals and applications storefronts are and will continue to be crowd-pleasers. This is a
very different picture from developed regions where mobile operator portals,
destinations that once dominated the landscape, are seriously challenged by OTT players. However, in APAC, 61 percent respondents believe operator portals are
important destinations, while 66 percent of respondents said their portals will
grow in importance in the next three years, attracting and retaining a loyal
audience of mobile users. It is interesting to note that mobile operators in
this region are also not intimidated by OTTs. To the contrary, they are
confident that the threat from these players will diminish over time.

In addition to developing their mobile payments strategies, mobile operators are also sharpening their focus on mobile advertising, mobile search and personalization – an approach that will allow them to super-charge VAS for maximum impact. 50 percent of respondents believe that at least half of their subscribers will purchase smartphones over the next three years; Blackberry is the most popular platform followed by Android and Apple.

In addition, 55 percent of respondents believe that personalization is key to
improving the value of content (and advertising) they deliver as part of the
VAS offer.

In conclusion, some recommendations from Amdocs suggest focusing your VAS business case around customer experience and retention, the
time is now to get into the mobile payments game as there is a huge unbanked
population, accept lower revenue shares for mobile payments versus first
generation commerce, continue to invest in portals, leveraging personalization
to create a better experience and lastly, continue to invest in Internet
services, as the OTT threat in this region is less, given the fact that mobile
is the primary access method for Internet usage in this region, and mobile
broadband rates are set to only grow further in APAC.

Some of the offerings from Amdocs Interactive from this market include Off-portal navigation and discovery – giving control over the mobile internet experience to your brand, Search engine – helping customers to locate relevant content faster, Targeted advertising engine – increasing your ad inventory and revenues, Direct billing API – allowing you to capitalize on off-portal content, Store front and commerce platform – allowing you to capitalize on content, Personalized portal – driving mobile broadband adoption, as well as usage of your portal, and Recommendations engine – which helps in increasing content sales.   

By TelecomLead.com Team

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