DiGiSPICE

VAS AGGREGATION

AN INTRODUCTION

Value Added Services commonly known as VAS refers to services facilitating users with capabilities beyond standard voice calls. These services are generally offered by mobile network providers or by third-party VAS vendors. On a conceptual level these services basically add value to the standard service offering, spurring subscribers to use their phone more and allowing the operator to drive up their ARPU.

STRUCTURAL FRAMEWORK- Segmentation of the VAS subsector

The VAS market broadly consists of 4 broad segments with the following market players.

a. Network Operators: These are the direct POC for the subscriber through which a user can access VAS .However, they are not the direct owners of the Value Added Services. The sourcing of the VAS services happens through other segments of the sector

b. Aggregators: An aggregator acts as a bridge that is directly connected to the operator. It brings together multiple platforms, channels, content and service providers &links VAS service owners and operators

c. Content and application service providers: These are the service players that hold VAS/Content licences and can pool, host and distribute content and applications using their own software and hardware platforms. They may directly connect with the operators or through Aggregators

d. Developers of content, applications and platforms: These are freelance content and application creators who do not own any licences. They are not licensed to distribute their services directly but can only do so by sourcing the same to licensed VAS players

FUNCTIONS & RESPONSIBILITIES OF MARKET PLAYERS

a) Network Operators

As the direct POC to the subscribers they transmit service requests from subscribers to content/service providers directly or through aggregators. The licences that they require to hold in order to transmit VAS to the end users are Digital Mobile License, Unified Service Access Service License (UASL) or any other license issued by the Telecom Regulatory Authority.

As POC to subscribers, operators protect them from the activation of unwanted and unauthorised value added services not requested by the end subscriber.

For the content and application providers who wish to outsource their administrative services they provide billing, revenue collection, publicity and e-marketing services

b) Aggregator

Acting as a simplified, direct and secure bridge between content and application providers and multiple network operators, they help to transmit VAS& multiple services to the end user. Multiple content/application partners can access multiple operators through a licensed aggregator to provide their services

For the content/application partners who wish to market their services globally, the aggregator should be able to provide direct link to the internet or International Data Access

Should be able to securely transport content to and from operators and VAS provider.

Additional Services:

Design | Architecting | Consulting

- Provide content/application partners with the provision of billing and revenue collection as required
- Collocating services to those who require.
- Acting as an intermediator for billing verification between multiple channel partners in the VAS value chain
- Monitoring & Positioning Services as per market trend
- Platform / API Integration of Partners incase of non-compliance
- Fraud Management
- Campaign / Vendor Management

c) Content & Application Providers

For hosting and distributing third party applications & Content

Installation of hardware and software platforms / API’s as required

Installing an in-house billing platform or outsourcing it to third parties and taking responsibility for billing the customer for revenue collection.

Collaborate with developers in determining thecost for VAS products and remission of revenue as per the agreed sharing formula

Take responsibility for user authentication, traffic management, security and service delivery

Staying on top of customer complaints, service level agreements and customer code of practice

Provide value added services as as per the regulations of the commission

Meet minimum technical specifications outlined in the technical framework as specified by the Operator / Regulatory

d) Developers of Content, Applications and Platforms

The developer must be able to provide proof of ownership of an application to be hosted and distributed if required by the content and application service provider.

Should have legal rights/licenses/ consent for content or third –party applications to be hosted by him

Responsibly pay all royalty/fees to the third-party owners of content and application and at the same time should be liable for infringement of third party copy rights if any

Collaborate with stakeholders as necessary to determine product price by taking into consideration development, hosting, distribution and other overhead costs

Be responsible for the accuracy of the VAS product being distributed and keep any bugs/errors in check.

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