KPNQwest, the European Internet and data communications company and Paybox.net, a joint venture backed by Deutsche Bank, Debitel, Lufthansa Systems, Hewlett-Packard, Oracle and Compaq, have announced a deal to roll-out mobile e-payment systems across Europe and the United States.
The Paybox payment service, which uses the KPNQwest IP infrastructure to connect to mobile operators across Europe, allows customers to transfer money from one mobile phone to another, shop securely on the Internet, pay for a taxi, or purchase goods in a shop. The consumer is not required to provide any personal information, such as a credit card number, but instead transfers cash from a pre-paid card. The service is free of charge and requires a Paybox account and personalised pin.
Under the agreement, KPNQwest will provide Paybox a 34 Mbit/s link to the KPNQwest EuroRings to deliver a customised VoIP Transit solution to enable payment authentication applications for secure transaction. The system, which is already operational in Austria, Germany, Spain, Sweden, will be launched in the United Kingdom and United States in coming weeks.
"We use the KPNQwest VoIP Transit solution to save money while ensuring the reliability of critical services, such as Caller ID," says Holger Berndt, director of infrastructure and operations for Paybox. "The solution has also enabled us to centralise our Interactive Voice Response (IVR) service. At the same time, we can process twice as many calls over the same amount of bandwidth, while maintaining the same level of quality."
Deutsche Bank has a 50% holding in paybox.net and Debitel a 4.8% share of the company. The international rollout of paybox.net began in Germany in July 2000, expanding to Austria, Spain and Sweden earlier this year.