But credit cards have their limitations. They are not suitable for purchases of digital content costing less than a few dollars per transaction (micro-payments). The card system is not cost efficient for processing small payment amounts, and in many cases the minimum transaction amount is around US$10.
To sell digital content, a different payment method is 소액결제현금화 required. In the early days of the internet, developers created ?e-money,? enabling consumers to purchase low-cost items online from a website supported by the e-money provider. However, there was the potential for fraud on the part of the e-money providers, to whom consumers supplied their credit-card numbers in exchange for tokens.
Many of these early attempts to create e-money mechanisms for managing micro-payment transactions schemas met with business failure (e.g., early micro-payment vendors such as Flooz, Benz, Digicash). Even for feasible business cases, the failures often occurred because the merchants had to implement additional hardware/software requirements, and the customers had to prepay. It was simply too difficult to implement, and not worth the (then) small revenue streams from the internet.
But the situation is much different now. New micro-payment services allow customers to set up online accounts tied to their chequing and savings accounts, thereby reaching a whole new segment of customers without credit cards. Micro-payment also has another future as a replacement for cash to pay for goods and services at shops, cafes, bars, libraries, printers, pharmacies, sports centres, photocopying and laser-printing shops, as well as for bus and taxi fares, or for any purchase in which coins are used.
The principal of the stored value systems is based on the micro-payments schema: store value accounts are connected to a credit card in which a consumer has to load credits in order to make a purchases, or connected to a stored value account that accumulates payments and makes authorizations based on increments.
With a stored value system, the consumers need to register for the services online or by phone; they have to provide a credit card number and load a balance. In order for the consumer to be able to make re-loads, the system needs to remember his or her information. Stored value systems are common in the service industry, for example as part of the McQuick service in Canada.
The rapid penetration of GSM handsets has already led to a situation in which more individuals carry a telephone than carry a bankcard. Additionally, people tend to have a single mobile telephone from a single operator, whereas they might have multiple bankcards.
This suggests that mobile operators have access to demographic segments not available to traditional financial institutions. By targeting the right demographic group, mobile operators can use their own billing systems to register micro-payment transactions. Pricing wireless applications on a per-use or subscription basis is the best way to appeal to consumers and to give them value for their money. More importantly, separating content fees from transport fees allows carriers to keep all transport revenues while enabling a revenue stream for content providers.