While its new BlackBerry 10 operating system months away, RIM has been working hard to ensure its BlackBerry App World marketplace is able to handle frictionless mobile transactions, today announcing that more than 50 carriers have already implemented carrier billing on its existing app store.
BlackBerry App World, which is now available in 170 markets and offers more than 100,000 smartphone apps, allows users across the world to charge app purchases to their mobile tariff, with RIM also integrating functionality into its BlackBerry Payment Service, which offers in-app purchases and subscriptions.
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Ronjon Nag, Vice President for the BlackBerry App World storefront at RIM, said: “We’re delighted to announce that over 50 of our carrier partners are now offering integrated carrier billing to customers on BlackBerry App World. We remain committed to developing innovative ways to support our carrier partners, while providing a platform that benefits the whole mobile ecosystem.”
Like Google, Facebook and Amazon, RIM uses technology provided by UK mobile payments specialist Bango. Using Bango’s platform, RIM has worked with larger operators including AT&T, Bell Mobility, Deutsche Telekom, Optus, Rogers, Telefonica, and Vodafone as well as carriers across Europe, South America, Asia and Africa.
Commenting on today’s announcement Bango CEO Ray Anderson said: “Our relationship with RIM goes from strength to strength and we’re delighted to see the integrated carrier billing experience Bango enables on BlackBerry smartphones in the hands of more and more customers. We’ve seen smartphone users rely increasingly on the ability to charge the costs of digital goods to their carrier bill, and with RIM, we’re providing them with a frictionless payment experience.”
For RIM, its future rests on what happens in the next six months. The company recently announced that it will launch its new BlackBerry 10 mobile operating system on January 30, 2013. At its first official launch event for the platform, it will also showcase two of its new BlackBerry 10 smartphones.
In recent months, RIM has been working to bring developers on board, holding two major developer events and introducing them to its new prototype devices.
In October, RIM opened app submissions for BlackBerry 10 devices, alerting developers to the fact that their apps would be available when the mobile operating system and devices finally becomes available to customers in the first quarter of 2013.