Vodacom launches new BlackBerry payments

2012-06-14 10:30

Cape Town - Vodacom has introduced a new way for both prepaid and contract customers to pay for app purchases on BlackBerry smartphones.

The mobile operator announced on Thursday that BlackBerry customers could now pay for apps by deducting the amounts directly from their prepaid credit balance or incurring charges to their contract account.

"We have worked closely with RIM to make this functionality available for our BlackBerry smartphone customers," said Prins Mhlanga, Managing Executive of Vodacom Digital Media.

The operator has been on a drive to increase data users of customers as an area of revenue growth in the face of increased competition by MTN and Cell C.

"The demand remains strong; there's strong competition in the SA market. Data revenue is up 24% year-on-year. The active data customers [are] up 35%: Now just over 12 million [and] all of the 12 million are buying data bundles on a monthly basis," Vodacom CEO Pieter Uys told News24.

The new billing system also allows in-app purchases to more seamless and brings a competitive advantage to RIM over devices running the Android operating system as it establishes a more direct billing relationship with users.

"We're delighted that Vodacom’s BlackBerry smartphone customers will be able to purchase apps on BlackBerry App World and conveniently charge them to their regular phone bill from Vodacom," said Bob Bose, RIM regional managing director.

The Canadian-based company has been hit by several departures of key executives as it struggles to survive the onslaught from Android devices and Apple's iPhone.

Market watchers are expecting the company to reverse its fortunes with the launch on the BlackBerry 10 smartphone, expected later in the year.

While Android devices are growing in SA, up to 65% of smartphones in the country are BlackBerry devices.

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  • QuintSch - 2012-06-14 10:57

    Why do Vodacom prepaid customers still have to pay R2.00 per MB for data??? Must be the most expensive in the world.

      Andre - 2012-06-14 11:30

      Buy a data bundle

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-06-14 11:38

      From my FNB Acc. 30mb = R25 100mb = R49 250mb = R99 500mb = R159 750mb = R220 1G = R279 1.5G = R319 2G = R369 2.5G = R429 I am not sure where you get the R2 = 1mb from, but thought of forward you these. Yes, I know it is still expensive, but you do get extra(free) as well when buying these. You also get data for free from your bank if you qualify like me. When not in office, somewhere in SA, I experience the Vodacom data connection still to be the best/reliable of all. I agree that we still getting ripped off.

      mornelaubscher - 2012-06-14 11:59

      R2/mb is out of bundle rates..Like Meister said "buy a bundle"

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-06-14 12:14

      Ooo! Thanks Morne. Agree, Than just practice control and ensure you always buy in bundles. Could hv still been cheaper, I believe.

      E=MC2 - 2012-06-14 14:06

      you're forgetting about a little something called BlackBerry Internet Service ;)

      bruce.chetty.1 - 2012-06-14 18:57

      A bit of history. When vodacom launched GPRS in 2003 1meg cost R45.00 2005 it was reduced to R10.00.

  • fburgur1 - 2012-06-14 11:17

    Is this the only way they can sell Blackberry these days

  • shiv179 - 2012-06-14 11:34

    This is nothing new, been doing this with the Nokia Ovi Store for more than 2 years.

      E=MC2 - 2012-06-14 14:07

      BB hater ;)

      Preshen - 2012-06-15 09:02

      Nokia is like Bin Laden was bomb but now is dead

  • ettiene.j.marx - 2012-06-14 12:10

    And they open us for even more fraud.So if my phone get stolen the thief can buy as many apps as he can until i can cancel that sim and I must pay for all the apps.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-06-14 12:18

      So you rather pay with your cc and only realized a day or two later you are in the red than stop your sim card. At least you know immediately/in a short time your phone is gone.

      E=MC2 - 2012-06-14 14:09

      BlackBerry Protect will allow you to cancel the sim... how longs it gonna take you to realise you're phones been stolen anyway?

  • Lee - 2012-06-14 12:21

    And what about contracts we have for kids, this could be a disaster for some of us........

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-06-14 13:01

      If you allow a kid with a contract you should hv trusted him/her enough. Why now worry. Please do not tell me the kid wanted a certain phone. If you could not afford the phone neither can you afford the contract. Specially in a kid's hands. My opinion: Kids stay on prepaid. Yes, I have kids....with phones(BB), but on prepaid and it gets paid through their allowances. Read Stefan's advise.(below) Maybe it can help.

  • Stefan Bosman - 2012-06-14 12:35

    idiots please you need to have your bb id before you can by an app , that is everytime you want to buy it you need to put in your password, and for parents why didnt you creat the password yourself so you can watch what they buy!!!!

  • wesley.bischoff - 2012-06-14 12:56

    Yet STILL no unlimited data plan for iPhone users?

      E=MC2 - 2012-06-14 14:10

      thats the one thing that will stop me from moving over!

  • baxitoo - 2012-06-14 14:01

    The article title should have been "Vodacom launches new BlackBerry App payments"

  • John Doeslough - 2012-06-14 17:57

    South Africa must be one of the few places where the blackberry still sells. Why would you buy a device from a company that is bound to go bankrupt???

  • john.chamberlain1 - 2012-06-18 12:32

    This Would Have been awesome 2 years ago!!!! Seriously talk about slow! Now I ride with Android and Google Play, maybe they should think about using vodacom accounts to purchase off there?

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