Nokia and Etisalat have announced a collaboration that will allow Nokia to provide advance Internet services to Nokia users in the region. Etisalat will provide a convenient means of payment to Nokia users willing to subscribe to paid Nokia services. As a first step, Nokia users will be able to purchase games on Nokia’s N-Gage platform and pay for Ovi-Maps services. The purchases will be made over the air and Etisalat will charge the amount to the customer’s bill. This is a very convenient and safe option as opposed to the use of Credit cards and other similar payment options. UAE will be the first country from the region to offer this service in Q2 2009.
This is very interesting to mention here that if you can use this service to pay for mobile applications, games and services, you can use it for other payments as well. For example, you can use the same mechanism for sending gifts to friends, you can use it for buying items at grocery stores or paying other utility bills, and everything is eventually charged to your monthly Etisalat bill.
In Pakistan, Etisalat is holding shares in PTCL and a similar payment model has been in place in the country for payments of PTCL DSL service and IP TV subscription. Those who subscribe to DSL or IP TV, the subscriptions are billed to the customers in their monthly phone bill. I would love to make other payments in the same way if it adds the luxury of convenience to the payment process.