Hooq launches direct carrier billing with Fortumo

HOOQ, Asia’s largest premium video-on-demand service and the mobile payments platform provider Fortumo are today announcing a partnership for direct carrier billing in India. Thanks to the partnership, consumers can now subscribe to HOOQ by charging payments to their mobile phone bill.

Now, more customers can subscribe to HOOQ through carrier billing as this payment method is available to 584 million subscribers of Airtel, Vodafone and Idea in India on both prepaid and postpaid plans. The subscription charge is either deducted from the prepaid balance or added to the user’s monthly postpaid invoice. HOOQ’s monthly subscription gives users access to a wide range of video content from Hollywood blockbuster movies to popular local TV programs. Users can also try out the service for free during a 7-day trial period.

“It is important for all businesses serving emerging market customers to allow for accessibility to their product. HOOQ is an app built in Asia for Asia and we are aware that in order for more customers to be able to enjoy our product, we must first make it easy for them to purchase it. Partnering with Fortumo is a natural choice with their seamless integration and secured APIs with the carrier billing partners” said Ravi Vora, Chief Marketing Officer of HOOQ.

“India is an attractive market for digital merchants right now as smartphone ownership is growing rapidly. New users want access to premium online content and entertainment, but often do not have a way to pay for this content. We are excited to be working together with HOOQ, a leading player in Asia’s digital streaming industry, to provide users with the simplest and most convenient payment method” said Sanjay Sinha, head of Fortumo India.

India was one of the fastest growing countries by smartphone adoption in 2015, with a 40% growth compared to the previous year. Direct carrier billing is available to a significantly larger part of India’s population than bank-based payments. This is because less than 20% of people in India own a debit or credit card. Additional data on India’s mobile payments ecosystem can be found in Fortumo’s market report.

Fortumo has been active in India since 2013. In the Asia Pacific region, Fortumo has coverage in 16 countries, covering a total of 1.3 billion mobile users. Besides HOOQ, Fortumo provides direct carrier billing to a number of leading digital streaming merchants in the region, including SonyLIV, Box TV, Ditto TV, Ten Sports and Gaana. Fortumo also provides carrier billing to app stores such as Google Play and Windows Store as well as game developers like Octro, Electronic Arts and Gameloft.

About HOOQ HOOQ is Asia's first premium video-on-demand service to launch across the region. HOOQ is a start-up joint venture established in January 2015 by Singtel, Sony Pictures Television and Warner Bros. HOOQ delivers over 15,000 Hollywood blockbusters and popular local programs to customers anytime, anywhere by enabling them to stream and download their favorite shows on their device or platform of choice. HOOQ currently operates in the Philippines, Thailand and India. For more information, visit www.hooq.tv.