INTERNET provider PowerTel says it will start billing customers for the actual data accessed in July when the new billing system that was acquired last month has undergone the necessary tests to make sure it is working properly.
PowerTel announced that they acquired the new billing system worth US$500 000 last month in an effort to diversify their services and products.
PowerTel marketing manager Mr Willard Nyagwande said the system had arrived in the country and was currently undergoing clearance checks at the airport.
“As soon as that has been done, we will begin the process of data input and then we will conduct a pilot test to make sure the system is working properly,” he said.
He said the whole process of test and implementation would take three months and then they would start billing customers according to the actual data bundles used within a month.
The company currently charges all mobile broadband users a flat US$50 monthly fee for unlimited usage.
“We want to ensure that customers receive bills on time and this system will enable us to do proper billing on our mass market products,” Mr Nyagwande said.
He said the company would, however, not be getting rid of the fixed billing system as there were some clients who prefer that system.
He said the fixed payments would, however, be controlled by the system instead of manually as it allowed customers to continue accessing data into the next month before they pay for the previous month.
“We will modify the product so the system will disconnect the customer once the data paid for has expired.
“So even if a customer has not exhausted his US$50, he would have to subscribe for that month to get access. This will ensure satisfaction on everyone’s part,” he added.
Mr Nyagwande also noted that the billing system would enable flawless interconnection with other networks and boost revenue for the company.
Powertel has been focused on growing its business by selling wholesale data bundles to other Internet service providers and big corporate buyers and the company will be introducing its own shops in the country in addition to the Zesa banking halls as distribution points for their products.
Meanwhile, the company has since last year invested nearly US$40 million in business and network expansion. It currently boasts of over 5 000km of fibre connection to the undersea cable.