In what looks like the first major blurring between telecommunications companies, credit card networks and banks, a conglomerate of mobile networks is launching a system that may take on credit cards as a way of paying for things, online and off. \nSimpay, founded by Orange, T-Mobile and Vodafone, along with Telefonica Moviles of Spain, is launching a system that will allow customers to charge things directly to their mobile phone bill. \nThat's not a new thing but, just as with Visa or Mastercard, with Simpay it will not matter who your bill is from, who the merchant is and who you are connecting through. \nThis is new: the Simpay network will, it promises, create an international payment system specifically designed for charging things to your mobile bill, whether they are bought online from your phone, on the internet or in a shop. \nMobile phone users have been able to buy things via their handset for a while, either by a premium text message, or by proprietary payment systems such as Vodafone's M-Pay. \nIn some parts of the world, customers can use their credit card, buy prepaid credits, or charge things from their bank account via their phone in a variety of ways, but none of these systems can talk to each other. \nThis isomers can only buy from merchants who are signed up with the same payment system as they are -- meaning the merchants and the mobile phone companies have to go through the expensive business of finding each other and joining up their systems before they can start to look for people to sell things to. \nRoaming customers are in trouble too: each mobile phone network has to negotiate with each other to support each others' payment system, or not, should people roam abroad. In the worst cases, with every country having three or more networks, the number of deals that need to be done for one company to be able to sell to every potential customer is prohibitive. \nIt's just too much work for a small ringtone business, for example, to deal with and connect to every mobile payment system in the world. \nSimpay will mean they won't have to. As with credit card networks, the merchant only needs to have an account with one of the connected networks, and every customer of every network connected to Simpay will be able to buy things from them, and charge the cost to their mobile bill. \nThe merchant is guaranteed to get paid, and promptly: something so far not taken for granted. \nJim Wadsworth, Simpay's chief marketing officer, says: "The big difference is that it will be supported by multiple operators in multiple countries. Individual consumers will be able to transact with a much wider range of merchants.
Just a few years ago, the millennial generation — generally defined as those born from the early 1980s through the mid-1990s — was synonymous with youthful rebellion. However, now, as the millennials ease into early middle age, they are finding their path out of their parents’ basement to be a lot harder than it was for earlier generations. The fundamental problem is that millennials are not building wealth. The wealth of the median US household headed by someone 35 or younger has actually shrunk in inflation-adjusted terms since the mid-2000s, even as the wealth of older Americans has continued to grow. An
Gogoro Inc (睿能創意) yesterday launched its first electric bicycle, the Gogoro Eeyo 1, in Taiwan, after unveiling the bike in New York in late May and in France on Tuesday. The company said it would also introduce the series in other European countries such as Germany and the Netherlands. The “Eeyo project” is the fourth of Gogoro’s eight projects that concentrate on smart transportation, which includes Gogoro’s electric scooter, battery swap system and electric scooter sharing service, company founder and chief executive officer Horace Luke (陸學森) told a media briefing in Taipei. “There are various types of city commuters. We will not
EXPERIMENTAL DRUG: While news about a COVID-19 vaccine is more eye-catching, developing a treatment would be more viable, the Senhwa boss said Senhwa Biosciences Inc (生華科) aims to raise NT$1.5 billion (US$50.57 million) by issuing 15 million new common shares in the third quarter of this year to fund the research of new drugs, including the experimental drug Silmitasertib for the treatment of COVID-19, the company said on Monday. That would be the firm’s largest fundraising effort after it raised more than NT$1.4 billion from an initial public offering on the Taipei Exchange (TPEX) in April 2017, chief financial officer Sarah Chang (張小萍) told the Taipei Times by telephone. The price of the new shares would depend on the firm’s average share price
NOT A PANACEA: Offering 5G services would not solve the problem of declining telecom incomes, chairman Sheih Chi-mau said, expecting a flat 5G telecom revenue Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信) yesterday became the nation’s first telecom to debut its 5G services, offering tiered tariffs that include a threshold of NT$599 and flat rates, as it aims to switch half of its subscribers to the 5G network within three years. Subscribers would have unlimited data transmission for monthly fees starting at NT$1,399 — the same flat rate as when the company launched its 4G service in 2014 — and they can subscribe to the highest-rate plan for NT$2,699 per month for faster data transmission speeds and larger bandwidth, the company said. Data transmission speeds would be within the range