[UK] The UK mobile SMS payment startup ImpulsePay (formerly GoPayforit), whose launch we covered in November, has added the option for content owners to sell adult content and services, including the ability to verify that customers are over the age of eighteen.
It does this by tying into the mobile operators’ own customer records whereby if the account isn’t registered as belonging to somebody of adult age, content such as certain films, games and music, as well as more traditional 18+ material, can’t be purchased using ImpulsePay.
The service, which is based on the industry-wide mobile payment system Payforit (backed by all of the major UK mobile networks), has a plethora of competitors including the likes of Zaypay and Daopay, along with the carriers’ own direct billing options and web based payment systems, such as PayPal etc.
ImpulsePay’s pitch to content owners, however, is that its payment service doesn’t require a customer to have a credit card and involves less mouse clicks than the traditional e-commerce stores of merchants, and therefore lowers the barrier to selling online. It also says that it offers an industry standard revenue split, although it has to be said that the mobile operators take a hefty chunk too, something that is obviously out of ImpulsePay’s immediate control.
Here’s how ImpulsePay’s age verification works:
- The content owner inserts an ImpulsePay ‘Buy Now’ button
- After clicking on that the purchaser enters their mobile phone number and is sent a secure PIN by SMS
- The PIN is then entered online and the operator checks the users’s handset is registered to an 18+ user
- If the user is not registered as over eighteen then they are sent to a help page
- However, if the user is registered as over eighteen the transaction is completed and the website updates automatically and redirects to the content
But what happens if a pay monthly phone is registered in a parent’s name, for example, but is in the possession of a minor? I’m told that the default setting is to not allow for adult content to be purchased via a customer’s bill and that the registered owner needs to first inform the operator that they accept 18+ content on their phone and prove their age. The same applies to pre-pay (PAYG) accounts.