Well look around, Broadband internet – a fixed fee/month and unlimited usage, IP Telephony you pay a sum per month and that’s it , unlimited calls ,same for Cable TV. In some countries in prepaid Telco scenarios again for a subscription fee, you get to make and receive unlimited calls and even if not for all types of calls ,certain types of calls like local calls would definitely be unlimited.
Is this because competition on usage rating is not feasible anymore ? For example you can come with .001 units of currency theoretically saying 10 calls for .01 unit of currency but then there is no competition space left out in such cases between multiple players.
In India with the advent of new carries the bill boards are overflowing these days with who can give you everything in paisa and not a rupee but kind of when you weigh them side by side there is’nt much differentiation.
Definitely players around are already doing it under pressure from the convergent bandwagon to innovate in their monetizing schemes . But still monetizing is still largely subscription based as that always looks like the easy way out rather than get reliable software that can do complex pricing accurately.
As far as resources are concerned in this direction I do know that there are rating engines which have the capabilities to meet up to this challenge of complex pricing but I guess the pains come in implementation and integrations . This gets further compounded by the insufficiency of the right volume of qualified expertise which is required to staff the related projects to provide the requisite coverage to all the modules.
For subscriptions the rating metric required is it’s occurrence and the charges get applied at the time the subscribers are cycled,a fixed amount is charged and a fixed quantity of free resources granted.
But DO NOT get me wrong the first part of subscription story goes with ease but there are complexities involved in the maintenance of these subscriptions whether it be in-cycle cancellations & refunds,installment payments & associated A/R, management of follow-on subscriptions which are to be effective in the future, loyalty points and etc …
My question would be that should we rely so heavily on subscriptions alone? Won’t this leave us little options in the pricing of our service catalogues in the future? Subscriptions is a powerhouse (agreed). I would say a more thorough and smarter usage profiling of customers needs to be done .A more intensive BA (business analytics) intervention here should help in actually coming up with more innovative and categorized pricing of usage. This would certainly help in a fresh profiling scheme of existing and new customers and of course this coupled with better subscription management would definitely bring in a whiff of fresh air as well as keep the avenues of future improvements in expanding business viability open.
Hope I could get through to you all with my points. I am still building more on this topic and hence please go ahead with your comments.