Fonix CEO, Rob Weisz, claims in an online video that mobile payments in the online gambling industry are definitely the way forward. Fonix, a mobile billing company, has recently distributed its services to many emerging online casinos in order to help their customers put down their deposits in the easiest way possible. But is mobile billing too easy? What happens when you get the unwanted “bill shock” at the end of every month? Does this lend to more risk to problem gambling? Industry experts argue no as, with monthly caps on spends, players have less to worry about when it comes to paying via their mobile.
A Huge Benefit For Online Casinos
When it comes to online gambling, mobile billing like PayforIt isn't exactly new. If the casino offers it, players can either put down a deposit by adding it to their monthly contract bill or by taking the money out of their pay-as-you-go credit.
For online casinos, this provides an easy, quick way for players to try out a slot machine or two. “We’ve launched a number of online casino businesses and products and mobile, whereby adding mobile charge to products within the suite of payment options in the cashier is providing a huge opportunity for those operators to acquire users in a really efficient manner,” Weisz said.
70% of new players, according to figures, pay using the mobile billing option with 70% then moving onto credit cards. As Weisz claims, “It's almost a Try-Before-You-Buy” option. This is why mobile billing is important for the industry. With gambling carrying an inherent risk of addiction, making players feel easier about departing with their money in a responsible way is every online casino's top priority. Not only does it make payments seem less daunting and difficult but the option pulls in new players which inevitably leads to bigger payouts.
But with all this ease of payment, what happens if you've paid too much? In his interview, Weisz discusses how some customers may still be wary about it. This is why Fonix and various mobile casinos have set up rules to avoid the chasm of problem gambling. “Nobody needs the bill shock,” he said. “Nobody needs to open up their phone bill in a month’s time and find £5,000 credit on to their phone bills.”
One such regulation is the “Daily Cap” which limits the amount players can deposit without exceeding their monthly bill. This is a very necessary precaution when employing mobile billing. As it is not directly taking money out of your account, it is all too easy to become blind to the fact that you put down £2,000 to play roulette just because you're not spending “real money”. You'll feel it, though, especially if when you get your contract bill.
The Credit Card Option
Once you have reached your limit, companies are advised to notify players and encourage them to move onto different methods of payment, notably the credit card payment which is a more controlled way of managing your deposits.
This is done via monthly caps, again limiting players to how much they can spend. Say you spend £30 a day via mobile. You're enticed immediately after you break that limit to “move over” to credit card billing where you'll be able to set a larger monthly cap as many mobile companies like 02 will not exceed £30 deposit limit.
“Payment is 13 Clicks Away!”
Another plus for mobile billing is the option to text your way to topping up your account. “We’ve launched a number of examples across sectors where at the point where they do turn providing a pop up…” Weizs explains. “It’s sort of 13 clicks of button to get yourself back in there and it really draws people back in.”
This “Pop-up” he mentions refers to the online ads made by the casinos to draw people back in. It has drawn non-gamblers into playing simply by offering the option of mobile payment, once again proving the point of how beneficial it is to the industry. “I think we have a wonderful opportunity,” Weizs reiterates. “We look forward to merchants we'll launch together in a couple of months.”