Cellular: It’s Your Bill Buddy!

The frequency of change in tariffs along with the multiplicity
of plans leaves consumers confused. Not anymore as the solution is now at your
fingertips. Trilogy, Texas-based business value services provider, has developed
a portal www.yourbillbuddy.com that
promises to reduce your mobile phone bills by analyzing your existing bills and
figuring out which rate plans from which mobile operator is most suitable to
you. This is one-of-its-kind website that addresses problems of people like you
and I who are faced with a deluge of mobile rate plans to choose from.

That’s not all; the benefits are multifold for mobile
operators and people who can use the portal to attract new subscribers. The
website is currently in beta stage and launched initially in Bangalore, Delhi
and Mumbai. It currently supports Airtel, Hutch, Reliance, Tata Indicom, BSNL,
MTNL, Idea and Spice subscribers.

Choices Made Easier
With 10 mobile operators in 23 circles to choose from, the task is not easy
when it comes to deciding which monthly post-paid plan or pre-paid plan best
suits the wallet. ‘YourBillBuddy.com’ works in three simple steps-login,
upload post-paid mobile bill with bill details, and follow instructions online.
Once you upload the bill, within seconds the site analyses your bill and gives
you a break-up of your usage-local calls, STD calls, ISD calls, SMS, and
roaming-and compares them against the tariff plans of each mobile operator.

The backend is supported with a robust algorithm through which
all types of bills are accepted and compared. The website then finds the best
available tariff across all service providers, and helps the subscriber switch
plans or operator online. The new service provider then provides the new number
and other details-all within a matter of few seconds without having to visit
the customer care centres of any operator.

Virendra Gupta, director of Telecom Services, Trilogy India,
says, "We are already seeing positive results. Thirty percent of our users
have saved at least 25% on their bills. Our customers find this online service
extremely cost-effective and reliable, as our software suggests the best rate
plan or operator based on fundamental value rather than perception."

"We are already
seeing positive results. Thirty percent of our users have saved at least
25% on their bills"
director of Telecom Services, Trilogy

YourBillBuddy.com shows a
detailed usage pattern based on your bill

Boon for Operators
The website promises great value even for the mobile operators as it offers
them an unbiased platform to attract new customers in a transparent manner.
"Today, mobile operators have two main objectives-customer positioning,
and retaining of customers or lowering churn rate. Today churn reduction is the
single most priority for any mobile operator as subscribers change their plans
frequently. We believe this can be reduced by 50%, and thus be beneficial for
the service providers who have tied up with us."

What can
Your BillBuddy do for You?

  • Provides unbiased
    recommendation on bill plan for free

  • Offers a hassle-free
    way to look at multiple plans from multiple operators at one glance

  • Compares your
    existing mobile bill against other tariff plans to suggest the best

For a mobile user, the choice of a mobile operator is primarily
determined by the feasibility of a bill plan. YourBillBuddy.com is a useful tool
for the operators to monitor the movement of existing subscribers in case they
switch to a new plan or operator. This gives them an opportunity to address the
issue by suitably improving or altering the rate plans. It also provides a good
platform for the operators to attract new customers.

The revenue model for the website is based on customer (mobile
operator) satisfaction. "Our business model is unique. Mobile operators
will pay us only if they are satisfied with our delivery. As they acquire more
customers through YourBillBuddy.com, we earn our revenue," says Gupta.

Interestingly, YourBillBuddy is an idea that emerged from a
brainstorming session held during Trilogy University Program held in India in
2004. At the annual event, a clutch of students undergoing the program suggested
the web service as a business model for Trilogy’s newly launched telecom
business service.

The site constantly monitors the changing tariff plans in the
market, and recommends the most appropriate plan. It is a free service for the
mobile consumers. In the first phase, Trilogy India plans to make this service
national and attract more service providers. It is also working on adding
additional features related to value added services and probably specific
features catering to enterprise customers.

The website offers
recommendations on suitable plan for cellular subscriber based on their
usage pattern

Indeed the advantage of not having to run from pillar to post in
looking at a myriad of plans, is the best reason why the website has attracted
over 25,000 registered users in Dec 2006 and still counting.

Malovika Rao

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