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To Billing Portal, or Not to Billing PortalTo Billing Portal, or Not to Billing Portal

Channel Partners

March 1, 2000

12 Min Read
To Billing Portal, or Not to Billing Portal

Posted: 03/2000

To Billing Portal, or Not to Billing Portal
By Peter Lambert

Thanks to the massive reach of user-friendly World Wide Web browsers, now more than
ever before, telecommunications and Internet service providers (ISPs) stand to save money
and improve the usefulness of their billing processes by switching from paper to
electronic billing. Yet strategic decisions about how to make the switch may grow more
daunting this year as new electronic billing technologies gain traction and the number and
kind of potential billing partners and competitors multiply.

In addition to multiple electronic bill presentment and payment (EBPP) technologies
from which to choose, other strategic factors began to surface in late 1999, as banks,
personal financial management (PFM) software and service providers, major web portals,
electronic commerce companies and payment processing companies formed an array of online
billing service partnerships designed to create "pay anyone" web sites that
aggregate and present in one place the 15 to 20 bills, including telecommunications bills,
that the typical consumer pays every month.

Theoretically, such aggregation will create a convenience magnet that could
substantially boost the number of consumers paying bills online, now estimated at between
6 million to 7 million by Sterling, Va.-based industry researcher Current Analysis Inc. (<ahref="http://www.currentanalysis.com">www.currentanalysis.com


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