Fortumo, a mobile payments specialist, has released a new version of its Android SDK, which includes an interesting new feature, letting app users make in-app purchases even when they’re not connected to the Internet.
According to Fortumo’s developer website, the system preferably needs the first payment to be made online, when key data is downloaded and stored on the device, ready for offline payments in the future. Alternatively, it’s possible to incorporate country payment data into the app, so an initial connection isn’t even needed.
Martin Koppel, CEO of Fortumo, said:
“Carrier billing works best in emerging markets where a large number of users do not own a credit card to make payments online. But even when carrier billing is available, users who are not connected to the Internet have so far been unable to make payments. Fortumo’s Android SDK changes this by enabling transactions for offline users as well. This increases revenue for app stores and developers publishing in these stores even further when compared to traditional credit card based billing solutions.”
Offline payments will neatly complement carrier billing, particularly where mobile coverage can be a problem. In India, for example, 80% of the country’s population live in rural areas, and there are 45 times fewer credit cards than mobile devices.
Fortumo’s mobile payments system is available in 88 countries around the world, and crucially, it works with network operators such as Telenor in Pakistan, and Turkcell in Turkey. Additionally, it’s integrated into device-specific app stores, including those offered by ZTE, Gionee, and Oppo. Its client list includes Glu Mobile, Gameloft, Rovio, and EA.