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South Africa - Direct Carrier Billing (Direct-to-bill, OBS - Online Billing), 'Silent Billing' Regulations - MSISDN Forwarding, WAP Billing, Single-Click

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Do txtNation provide Direct Carrier Billing (OBS) in the South African Market?

txtNation provide Direct Operator Payments in South Africa across several mobile networks.

Silent Billing, OBS and MSISDN Forwarding is also available. To find out more about setting up services for Direct Billing in South Africa and other Mobile Payment options in South Africa, contact your Account Manager.

 

Billing Types possible:

  • One time
  • Subscriptions

 

Billing Flows:

  • Single Click (data connection)
  • WOIRAR - Web Optin Requiring a Reply (wifi or when MSISDN not detected)
  • USSD (MTN on wifi or when MSISDN not detected)

 

The following are text messages that are configured and activated on a typical service:

Message TypeMessage Text
Opt-in Single Click: User clicks button to agree.

or if no MSISDN detected:

WORAR: Reply YES to this message to complete your subscription to {service name} @R5 every 2 days. For help call {toll free customer support number}.

Welcome Message Welcome to {service name}. You are subscribed at a charge of R5/every 2 days. To unsubscribe reply STOP or SMS STOP to {shortcode}. For help call {toll free customer support number}.
Comfort Message You are subscribed to {service name} SMS at a charge of R5 every 2 days. To unsubscribe reply STOP or SMS STOP to {shortcode}. For help call {toll free customer support number}.
Termination Message You have been unsubscribed from {service name}. For help call {toll free customer support number}.

 

Users on MTN where no MSISDN is detected there are 2 USSD opt-in options available after the user has entered their MSISDN. The first is enabled as default:


Option 1) Direct USSD Message

After user has entered their MSISDN they are sent a USSD message as follows:

Please confirm your request for {service name} from {company name} at R3.00/week. 1. Accept 2. Decline


Option 2) SMS Message with Dial Prompt

SMS message sent to the user as follows:

"Dial *141*5*775# to confirm your subscription to {service name} @R3.00/week. Ignore this message to opt out. Assistance call {company name} on {customer service number}."

After completing the above a USSD message is received saying:

"{Company names} wants to charge you for {service name} and R3.00 per week. Press 1 to accept. Press 2 to decline."

 

With both Single Click and Web Billing all message flows are managed for you and do not require coding, however you do need to ensure that your fallback URL contains the regulatory information as listed here

 

Read more: https://clients.txtnation.com/entries/22562378-South-Africa-Premium-SMS-Regulations for more information on billing flows.

 

 

Silent Billing:

 

Single-Click (WAP Billing using MSISDN Forwarding) is available on networks:

  • MTN
  • Cell-C (inc. Virgin) 
  • Vodacom 

Single-Click - This uses a network hosted page to confirm purchase via a Confirm button. See typical flow below:

 

South_Africa_MSISDN.jpg

 

When a subscriber on one of the SA networks navigates to a site over their 3G / 4G connection, the header information is not enriched with MSISDN information. (This used to be the practice but this is no longer the case). Network detection / routing is now based on network IP Pools and in the case of web billing on the Vodacom and Cell-C networks, the MSISDN is not required on the original opt-in call but it is detected by the network and echoed back to us in the opt-in response The exception case is the MTN network where we register our billing service to get it white-listed, upon which they do enrich the header info with the MSISDN and we have to provide this in the opt-in call. The URL / API we provided hides the implementation details and these discrepancies between the network implementations and requirements.

 

Network Payment pages for Single-Click Billing:

Each network has their own page with little or no customisation options. The Vodadom network for example allows us to specify a banner, custom service text and colours (if required and on good case otherwise standard page), where the MTN and Cell-C networks do not allow any customization.

Below the sample window of the MTN page the user will see as an example (Cell-C and Vodacom similar):

 

 MTN_example_South_Africa_SingleClick.png

 

Online Billing Services (OBS) is a Billing Mechanism provided to trusted third parties on whose behalf the mobile network bills and collects payment for content services from the mobile subscriber.

 

Why make use of OBS?

  • OBS allows you to charge flexible rates for the content provided.
  • OBS allows you to change the charge of your content as your costs or value of the content increase.
  • OBS allows you to bill for subscription and adhoc services.
  • OBS allows you to bill for content up to R50.00.

 

Difference between OBS and Premium Rated Billing

Vodacom has 2 types of billing mechanisms available for WASPs to bill for Value Added Service (VAS) provided to their customers. The first type is Premium Rated Billing and the second type of billing is OBS.

Below is a comparison between the 2 types of billing provided by Vodacom namely OBS and Premium Rated Billing:

OBSPremium Rated Billing
Flexibility e.g. a price of R 4.99 can be charged for content services. 1. WASPs must choose from a defined tariff band.
2. Bill for content up to R50.00 2. Bill for content up to R30.00
3. Subscription services. 3. No subscription services.
4. Bearer and content charge billed separately. 4. Bearer and content charge billed in one transaction

Source: http://vodacom.com/smme/voice/obs

 

Regulations:

  • Same as Premium SMS and / or Silent Billing. See page: 

https://clients.txtnation.com/entries/22562378-South-Africa-Premium-SMS-Regulations
https://clients.txtnation.com/entries/20613611-South-Africa-Premium-SMS-Short-Code-Requirements

  • For inclusion of MSISDN - Wap Billing

Price, support information and frequency must be present under pay button. Network Hosted page. Whitelisted URL(s)

 

 

Approval Process:

 

 

 

Customer Care:

 

  • Inclusion of Customer Care Support http://sd.txtnation.com link in MT messages, for Self Service Customer Care.  

 

https://clients.txtnation.com/entries/20002782-Customer-Care-Advertising-Customer-Care

 

  

 

How to use Cookies for repeat users:

 

 

Screenshots of OBS Pages:

 

 

 

Example Buttons:

 

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Comments

  • Avatar
    Account Manager

    Tips:
    3 to 5 rand per day for Quizzes, Dating
    Adult is biggest. Recommend 6 rand per day max

    Large amount of Pre paid users
    Friday top up, over weekend
    Daily is best for subscription

    For Cell C retry is allowed 4 times a day without extra costs.
    For MTN retry is allowed 4 times a day as well but at a cost. Therefore, not recommended to use retry options for MTN. When a user is not chargeable for 30 days in a row, the user will be unsubscribed from the service.

    Cell C: Max 4 times per day (free). After is Retry fee. Only three failed billing attempts will be allowed per service per day.  When you receive the “insufficient funds, no credit” status, you can initiate this call.
    MTN: Max 4 times per day (not free). Retry fee.
    Vodacom: Retry fee

     

     

    Edited by Account Manager
  • Avatar
    Account Manager

    Tips:
    R3.50 per day or R14.99 per week for subscription services. Rec. per day.
    Insufficient funds are quite common and high.
    Retry 3 times average.

  • Avatar
    Account Manager

    OBS Flow

    Subscription flow on Mobile Web (WAP):
    1. Landing page
    2. User selects what they want
    3. Payment page
    4. Confirmation page
    5. Subscription starts
    Users on mobile web using (non WIFI) 3G will be recognised using header enrichment.

    Subscription flow WIFI:
    1. Landing page
    2. User selects what they want
    3. MSISDN entered
    4. User receives an SMS with link: Vodacom: Confirm with SMS. CellC, MTN: open link and click confirm
    5. Confirmation page
    6. Subscription starts

    Premium SMS Flow

    Subscription flow on Mobile Web (WAP):
    1. Landing page
    2. User selects what they want
    3. User Enters Mobile
    4. Receives PIN and, or LINK (or instruction to reply)
    5. Enters PIN or clicks on LINK (or replies with Keyword)
    6. Subscription starts
    Users on mobile web using (non WIFI) 3G will be recognised using header enrichment.

    Subscription flow WIFI:
    1. Landing page
    2. User selects what they want
    3. User Enters Mobile
    4. Receives PIN (or instruction to reply)
    5. Enters PIN (or replies with Keyword)
    6. Subscription starts

  • Avatar
    Account Manager

    Launching OBS from Banner

    You can go to OBS straight from banner, once your website has been approved.

    See example buttons above showing price in button.

    It works for the major networks: Vodacom and MTN.

    Telkom and Cell C with their MSISDN requirements it does not.

     

    Network payment page

    It is customisable.

    This is what can be customised:

    • Telkom logo
    • Vodacom logo
    • Vodacom text colour
    • Vodacom background colour

    Logo dimensions: maximum height of 115 pixels and a maximum width of 300 pixels

    Edited by Account Manager
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