Billing Gets Personal
Using Policy and Charging Rules Function (PCRF) functionality from Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE: ALU), which comes as part of the vendor's 5780 Dynamic Services Controller (DSC), Belgacom hopes to make mobile data billing less complicated and more personalized for its customers, by helping them to keep track of how much data they use each month nationally as well as internationally.
Part of this policy control functionality will go towards keeping Belgacom in line with the latest EU regulations on international data roaming and preventing so-called "bill shock." But Belgacom can use the capability for more than just regulatory compliance or managing monthly data caps. And that's why it's interesting.
Belgacom will give customers real-time alerts about how much data they're using as well as access to their usage information that is continually updated. And with the data collected about subscribers' usage patterns, the operator will be able to tailor mobile data tariffs based on how much an individual actually consumes.
Anything that takes the complexity and mystery out of mobile data charges has got to be a good thing, from a user's point of view. And it will be interesting to see just how personalized Belgacom will want to make its mobile data plans in future.
— Michelle Donegan, European Editor, Light Reading Mobile