Wireless application service provider 724 Solutions Inc., which has kept itself alive for the past two years by focusing on the financial services market, is taking its business to the carriers.
The Austin, Texas company is planning to focus on three areas for carrier services – payments, alerts and messaging, and portals, according to Dick Costolo, vice president of mobile operator strategy at 724 Solutions. Costolo said that now more than ever, carriers need ways to save money and increase revenue.
"The mobile operators have quickly decreasing airtime revenues," he said. "They have everything from spectrum expenses to forced technology upgrades… they find that they have dramatic call center costs at the end of every month."
For starters, the company is announcing three new platforms.
724 Payments is an architecture that supports multiple payment types for wireless services, giving customers the ability to pay for their services in multiple ways and giving carriers more risk management options in terms of setting rules in how different customers pay for their services. Telecom equipment provider Nortel Networks Ltd. will be selling the service on an OEM basis, with carrier services launching in the beginning of next year, officials said.
724 Frameworks is a development and runtime environment and processing engine that makes it easier for carriers to develop device-independent and multimodal applications. Aspire Technologies, a member of China Mobile, is using this service to develop a wireless portal operation that will compete against NTT DoCoMos iMode service, 724 officials said. Finally, 724 Alerts enables carriers to take existing SMS and instant messaging apps and integrate them with payment.