Idea subscribers who don’t have credit card can now purchase apps from Microsoft’s Windows Phone Store via operator billing. This is the first time Microsoft has partnered with a carrier for operator billing for its Windows Phone store.
If you are a prepaid user, the price of the app will be deducted from your balance, while for postpaid users charges will be added in the monthly bill. This is a good move as most people in India don’t have access to credit card which limits their Windows Phone Experience and negatively impacts developer revenue.
“Microsoft is constantly working on expanding monetization options for developers on our platforms and this partnership is another step in that direction. Unlike other parts of the world, credit card penetration in India is very low and this in turn impedes the consumer purchase experience and limits app monetization. With the introduction of operator billing, we have seen significant increase in consumer commerce across developed and emerging markets. We expect Microsoft’s partnership with Idea Cellular to immensely benefit consumers and developers,” said Harish Vaidyanathan, Director-Evangelism at Microsoft Corporation (India) Pvt. Ltd.
Windows Phone store currently has over 550,000 INR and registers 66 percent YoY growth. Total 8 billion apps have been downloaded till date. Globally, it offers 81 mobile operator billing connections in 46 markets.
According to Microsoft, Developers have increased 8x revenue per month in emerging markets and their revenue has increased over 3 times per month in developed nations because of operator billing.
Speaking at the announcement, Sashi Shankar, Chief Marketing Officer, Idea Cellular, said “Microsoft and Idea have had a long-standing and an extremely fruitful association, and this new venture will only strengthen our joint mission to offer enriched services to our consumers. This development eases a consumer’s access to premium apps on Windows Store through a convenient purchase process. We are happy to be the first operator to partner with Microsoft for Windows Store and offer our consumers the ease to download a range of local and global applications without worrying about the mode of payment.”