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Facebook Confirms Operator Billing for Mobile Web Apps

Earlier this month, Daily Deal Media reported that Facebook has entered into a definitive but unspecified partnership with Bango. At the time, it was rumored that Bango, which provides the technology essential for businesses to collect payment from mobile users or online content subscribers, would be used to help Facebook facilitate a new mobile billing platform.

On Monday, the speculation became reality as the social networking giant confirmed the launch of operator billing for mobile web apps.

Big News Out of Barcelona

Today in Barcelona, Spain at Mobile World Congress 2012, Facebook CTO Bret Taylor said the company is partnering with mobile operators across the world to facilitate “streamlined billing practices” that will allow Facebook users to charge their mobile app purchases directly to their wireless bill.

As expected, Taylor confirmed that Bango will, indeed, play an integral role in this new endeavor by the world’s most expansive and profitable social network.

Taylor also revealed that Facebook is teaming with the likes of Verizon Wireless, AT&T, T-Mobile USA, Deutsche Telekom, Orange, Telefónica, Vodafone, KDDI and Softbank Mobile to deliver automated billing throughout Facebook’s pervasive and cross-platform mobile applications that integrate the Pay Dialog prompt.

“We’re working with operators around the world to minimize the number of steps needed to complete a transaction in mobile web apps, which will make it easier for hundreds of millions of people worldwide to purchase apps on their device via operator billing,” the Facebook Developer’s Blog reads.

Facebook says it will make available an SDK for mobile app developers wanting to utilize Pay Dialog into their digital creations.

“We’re eliminating the SMS verification step and giving users a single step to confirm their purchase,” Taylor says. “We’re unlocking the business potential of the mobile web.”

Just Scratching The Surface

Since filing to go public earlier this year, the scuttlebutt in Silicon Valley maintains that Facebook is on the verge of implementing a wide variety of sophisticated revenue-minded solutions and services spanning every facet of the contemporary mobile realm – from mobile advertising to mobile payments.

As a result, what we’re seeing with Bango and the advent of operator billing for mobile apps through Facebook is only the beginning in a robust and fast-coming series of significant improvements inbound to the Facebook experience in the coming months – improvements chiefly designed to generate new revenue streams for investors to salivate over.

As of this writing, Facebook enjoys a healthy global mobile user base of 435 million individuals, all of whom remain active on Facebook primarily through the social network’s various mobile applications and access points.

Without question, this latent goldmine can no longer be ignored by social media’s biggest player. That much was clear from Facebook’s February 1st IPO-related filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which says the company plans to raise a whopping $5 billion in its long awaited Wall Street debut later this year.

Source: Facebook Developer’s Blog


Michael Essany

Michael Essany is a veteran marketing executive, bestselling author, and mobile technology blogger who has served as Vice President of Indiana Grain Company since 2008. A former E! Entertainment Television host and producer, Essany resides with his wife and daughter just outside of Chicago, Illinois. Michael is Daily Deal Media contributor specializing in Social Media, eCommerce (and mCommerce) and Mobile Marketing/Advertising. Connect: @Michael_Essany
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