3 Australia Opens their Network with the 3API

On Monday the 1st of December, to relatively little fanfare, 3 Australia announced the launched their Telco API based upon the OCSG (Oracle’s Communication Services Gatekeeper).  3 yet again demonstrates its innovation leadership.  The 3API is initially focused upon charging, enabling customers to purchase services from third party providers (e.g. Nokia N-Gage games) and use their mobile bill or prepaid credit to pay.  The 3API is set of interfaces and a framework (ParlayX) that securely connects approved third parties to 3.

Initially the 3API is focused upon simplifying the way third parties are able to charge for their content and services.  However, with the platform in place other capabilities can quickly be added to the 3API.  The next critical step is for 3 Australia to implement the processes that enable third party applications and services is get direct early adopter customer access to let the market, rather than the operator, decide on application success.   This requires the 3 Developer Programme evolve to address the issues discussed in previous weblog articles on Open Innovation and Application Developer Needs and Application Developer Needs Part 2.

4 thoughts on “3 Australia Opens their Network with the 3API

  1. Ade

    Hi Alan,
    Interesting article. From your earlier blog entries on operator APIs I gleaned that you have reservations about Parlay X and consider it something of an obstacle to smoother Developer-Mobile Network Operator relations. With the launch of the 3’s Parlay X-based 3API, which is providing a useful service to customers and indirectly to developers by making it easier for customers to pay for and consequently take up their apps, are you warming to Parlay X :-)?

  2. Alan Quayle

    Hi Ade,
    You’re right, in previous articles I’ve explained why native ParlayX interfaces need further abstraction for most (though not all) developers. I met the 3 Australia guys last month. They’re making the right steps in their implementation. Keep an eye on what 3 does around the Telco API, not just in Australia, it will be an interesting case study on service innovation.
    Best Regards,

  3. Önder

    Hi Alan,
    Isn’t the sentence “3 yet again demonstrates its innovation leadership.” is a bit overrated? What do you think is so innovative about this initiative? Such 3rd party charging services are common in many operators.

  4. Alan Quayle

    Hi Önder,
    You’re correct many operators have a billing API. However, few operators have implemented it within a standards based ParlayX gateway. This enables 3 to expose many more capabilities from its network in a common standards-based framework, with common policy control. Many operators struggle with the gateway business case, 3 has made the leap (innovated) and implemented a platform that enables it to truly open its network. As any application developer will attest, exposing a proprietary billing API is not opening the network. I hope this helps explain why I think they are demonstrating innovation leadership.

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