Both MVNOs and MNOs offer communication services to their subscribers even through MVNO have to buy bulk minutes and data from MNOs in order to cater to their users. MVNOs and MNOs perform similar functions such that most users do not know that MVNOs needs to purchase bulk packages from MNOs in order to cater to them. They perform functions such as;
- Issuing and activation of Sim cards
- Have branding and marketing
- They set their own tariffs
- Offer customer care and support to subscribers
Due to the services offered by the two network providers to their subscribers, it is important for them to have a billing system. MVNOs rely on MNOs interconnect billing services.
Interconnect billing system for MVNOs
A majority of the MVNOs depend on the MNOs Interconnect billing system because they do not have their own. The interconnect billing system keeps track of income and spending as well as the demand in the price for airtime. Since the MNO will have a part in the operations of the MVNO, they can outsource an independent vendor. The vendor who will keep track of how data is being processed will help to ensure that both the MNOs and MVNOs get a fair share of their earnings.
When MVNOs receive incoming calls they charge the MNOs an amount of money which is less compared to the airtime charge. The fee charged can be termed as an interconnect termination fee. The termination fee of both the MNO and the MVNO is similar to the fee which the operator is charged.
In case of an outgoing call, the MNO will receive an imposed payment which is less than the airtime charge by the terminating operator.
In the present day for any business to be able to maximize on the profits that it is making day in and out, they need to have a billing system that will help in the charging of prepaid services. More and more people are purchasing smartphones and using them for data. Previously, a lot of mobile users would spend a big amount of their funds on voice calls as well as messages; however, there has been a change. In the era whereby everyone is on their laptops, tablets, smartphones as well as other internet devices, data is likely to be what most users are highly spending on.
That is why network operators put up good billing systems that help them in keeping track of their earnings and as well keep a record of their clients’ information. Cloud based systems and Internet of things help when it comes to billing operations.
MVNOs have been in operation for several decades now and even though there have been speculations that they would be run out of the market they are still growing. In certain countries, MVNOs are dominant. MVNOs still depend on MVNEs to act as intermediaries. Those who can be able to predict the future based on their own careful analysis speculate that MVNOs are moving towards a huge digital transformation whereby they will be able to have control of over their own data by owning it and being able to manage their own billing systems.
MVNOs can either choose to;
- Buy bulk services at wholesale prices from MNOs, brand them, and then resell them to their subscribers.
- Brand their services and make them available for users to purchase with MVNEs helping them to provide the services to end users at a fixed commission.
- Sell their products and services and pay the MVNE based on the profits they get from their end users.
Regardless of the options that MVNOs choose they will still be expected to pay a deposit to MVNE followed by monthly payments.
Since both of these network operators offer a variety of services, billing is not an option but a requirement. MNOs can be able to carry out their own billing hence they can be able to keep track of the progress that their business makes. MVNOs, on the other hand, will require MVNEs to act as intermediaries between them and the end users. MVNOs should be able to choose which option will work best for them when it comes to their billing requirements.