Rogers rolls out Google Play carrier billing for Android users

Daniel Bader

November 1, 2013 1:37pm

Rogers was the first carrier in Canada to support Play Store gift card redemption earlier this year, and is now claiming the same for Android-based carrier billing.

The provider already supports carrier billing on BlackBerry and Windows Phone, but Google’s APIs were more recently introduced and are taking time to catch on. Carrier billing refers to the ability to pay for an app, in-app purchase, movie, magazine or book using your Rogers account, having it show up on your next bill.

In an email to us Rogers says it’s rolling out to select customers now, and will soon reach all Android users.

“Today, Rogers is beginning to roll out carrier billing to the Google Play store to a select amount of Rogers customers. Customers will be able to access this as an alternative payment option when making a payment in Google Play. We expect this service to be available to all customers in the coming weeks.

There is no word on whether other carriers like Bell or TELUS will follow suit. Rogers customers will still need to enter their Google account passwords before making purchases, ensuring unauthorized access without a credit card is still difficult.

  • arman

    Lets go Telus, please get on this!

  • howitzerr

    All i see is Billing errors

    • vn33

      Agreed !
      I’d rather have Google Play charged directly to my CC, than let a carrier dips into it. Right now, I don’t even have automatic payment to Carriers

    • IJustGotaTan

      And we’ll have to pay tax on the app purchases since it gets added to the final bill.

    • IJustGotaTan

      And we’ll have to pay tax on the app purchases since it gets added to the final bill.

  • Max Fireman

    Eww Wind…

    • RG

      Get ready for down votes 😉

    • Max Fireman

      Reception, network speeds and dropped calls. Also the fact that all the popular devices have to be on a separate network frequency just to operate on Wind. That’s about it.

  • David Etienne

    I’ve never understood the purpose of this form of payment. Is it just to delay billing for an extra two weeks or so? i.e. credit card is due at the end of the month vs a phone bill which accrues to the end of the month but payment isn’t due until 2-3 weeks later. If you really need to delay payment of a 99 cent app, then you should reconsider your budget priorities.

    • WalkinOnBottles

      For the consumer, I think it’s more about organizing it all into one payment, thus making it easier to keep track of. Besides, pretty sure you can pay your phone bill with various other methods besides a credit card. So it’s just convenience, I suppose. For the carriers, it’s just another alternative method to squeeze sweet money out of fools.

    • David Etienne

      Is there a fee associated with this billing option?

    • WalkinOnBottles

      Not that’s known, but it’s a possibility. I’m mostly speaking about billing errors that are known to happen with this kind of stuff.

    • Stephen_81

      Not with BlackBerry purchases. so I would assume not with Google Play. the fee is like Credit and debt fees I suspect Google Play swallows the % that the carrier wants from the deal

    • David Etienne

      While I can see your point about credit cards, I think we can both agree that viewing the details of purchases and usage on your cell phone bill is anything but “convenient.”

    • egsfgfgdg

      its pretty easy to do, most people look at it and just give up without even looking at it for 5 seconds.

    • David Etienne

      It’s not the interface that’s difficult. There are often weird restrictions on viewing recent transactions and usage data. Often it takes up to 2 days to see what I’ve used in terms of data, calls, etc (I’ve never signed up for app or media content billing). Even stranger, sometimes after the billing cycle for the previous month is over, I won’t be able to see what I used in total through the previous month, but I’ll be able to see what I’ve already used in the current billing cycle. Frustrating stuff for sure.

    • Stephen_81

      depends on your Creditcard. I find viewing my purchases on my Rogers Bill to be very convenient compared to that of my AMEX mostly because my Rogers purchases are far fewer.

    • Mollejuo Software

      One of the biggest advantages the iOS platform has over Android is that every single iOS user already has the credit card information setup, as is -almost- mandatory to have an iTunes account, hence making paying for an app easier. This is one of the reasons why people buy more apps in iOS than in Android. Where as in Android, credit card information is optional. Carrier billing is great because for one, more options are always good, secondly if the person doesn’t want to put their credit card on Google Play, most probably their carrier already has it, so -to some extent- is more convenient. Cheers!

    • Mike Oxlong

      Since when is it necessary to use a credit card to sign up to iTunes?
      I have personally setup over 40 accounts for family and friends and not once had that requirement. In fact, I wouldn’t use it or recommend it if that were the case.
      Ever heard if iTunes gift cards? You know, those things you can buy pretty much everywhere (even at the gas station)? Yep, that’s what those are for. And you don’t have to worry about identity theft or credit misuse either. You really need to get your facts straight before spewing garbage like this. Makes you look kinda dumb.

    • Mollejuo Software

      Hello Mike,

      On the initial reply I included the word *almost*.


    • Stephen_81

      Reason I’ve used Carrier billing has been for single monthly payments.

      deferring the payment for a few weeks doesn’t matter but since my Creditcard is used for business needs and I put over 50k a year on it minimizing the transaction on the account makes managing easier.

      With BlackBerry my movie and music purchases also go through my carrier billing not sure if this would be the same for Google but it really is convenient for tracking my mobile purchases on the smaller easier to read bill of my carrier vs my pages and pages of transactions of my Amex.

    • killahbees

      think about emerging countries, lots of phones, very few credit cards. Now they can buy on their prepaid accounts. I could see Apple following suit only in those markets.

    • Ian Gillis

      not everyone has a credit card…do u understand that? lol

  • DanDan

    Another way for Rogers to tack on processing fees!

  • Haxor99

    This is great for those with corporate plans where the company pays their Roger’s bill every month!

    • Magjee

      Yes it is ^_^

  • beyond

    is carrier billing optional? can you still purchase directly using credit card from play store?

  • Ray

    The biggest problem with this that I see is if kids that are on their parents plans are allowed to download apps and bill to the account without the parents knowing. Is there going to be a sign up process so that only the account holder can authorize purchases rather then anyone who happens to have a phone on the account?

    • Gabriel

      As mentioned in the article, you will still have to enter your password in order to complete a purchase

    • Stephen_81

      I’ve been doing it with BlackBerry for years. It is very easy to have Carrier billing disabled/enabled beyond just controlling purchases through traditional password means

    • Ian Gillis

      Hey Ray you have to enter your Google password to purchase.

  • Stephen_81

    I am sure Google would love that aswell.
    They could build a much better profile of you if they controlled your websearch, your purchasing patterns, and your location/communication trends.

    • Stephen_81

      Well I don’t use that many google services now as it is.

      But yes I’d rather not give control over to Google of all my financial data along with all the data they already harvest.

      having all my eggs in one basket isn’t something I’m keen on. After having my identity compromised once and realizing all my financial access was available through a single account I’ve diversified so I don’t get stuck without money again.

  • Max Fireman

    Fair enough

  • Michael Bazdell

    I’ve posted this a few times about Wind and I’ll do so again. Wind is great if you don’t go anywhere. I’m in Ottawa, and it’s not completely covered by Wind. So that $40 ends up being more to somebody that leaves the ridiculously small “Wind Zones” if you make or receive any calls, or have the audacity to use data. For example, my office which is in an industrial part of town, is outside the Wind Zone.

    So if all you do is go to school/work which is in the heart of the city, and you live closer to the center of the city, then you’re okay. If you ever leave there, that $40 ends up being a very misleading advertisement.

  • Ian Gillis

    Lol wind..good luck with service outside vancouver…or behind a skyscraper…or in a elevator lol

  • Ian Gillis

    Working service on my HTC one!! After talking to 3 other Rogers employees… and informing one customer service agent what the Google Play store was….true story. A nice lady found out the service is already running, after this article I thought Rogers had to activate this service…but it was already in Google Play…wooohooo!!! No one likes credit cards btw.