Telco customers buy and sell mobile data on DENT blockchain

DENT Wireless, owner of Dentcoin, the 65th-placed token with a market cap of $314 million, announced today that customers of the Hong Kong arm of Philippines telecom company (Telco) PLDT used its technology to buy and sell mobile data.

Filipino customers of PLDT living in Hong Kong were selected to take part in the trial, which was conducted using DENT’s prototype iOS app.

The blockchain technology that enables the trading of mobile data is powered by the Dentcoin token, of which there is a total supply of 100 billion, with 10.6 billion currently in circulation.

Research from Ericsson ConsumerLab predicts that personal mobile data usage will grow by 10 times to reach an average of 25GB in 2022 in North America. That, combined with a further study in January this year which provided evidence showing that consumers want the ability to trade their data, it makes mobile data trading fertile ground for DENT’s solution.

Tero Katajainen, chief executive and founder of DENT Wireless, said of the successful trial: “We are extremely excited about this successful trial with PLDT HK. It shows customers love our mobile data trading app and the underlying technology works seamlessly. The implementation and connectivity to the billing system of this operator took only three weeks from start to finish, thanks to the talented team of PLDT HK.”

Hong Kong-based DENT Wireless was founded in 2014 and aims to build an open marketplace for buying and selling mobile data by breaking down what it sees as the isolated silos represented by incumbent telephone companies.

Data plans are creeping up and there are established demographics at both ends of the range of usage, suggesting there is plenty of scope to trade the mismatch in personal usage and the data plan a customer happens to be on. There is no hard evidence on how much data goes unused from month to month because the telephone companies are not likely to want to advertise the level of wasted allowance on their networks, but it is thought to be excessive.

Considering that there will also be those who run out of data every month as well as those with excess, trading is the ideal solution and is well-suited to a decentralised solution such as that on offer from DENT.

The main problem for DENT, however, is getting networks to use their technology to trade within their networks and more radically between them, although that is unlikely to happen unless governments introduce regulations to force networks to remove the walls that separate customers on one network from those on another.

Ramon Greep, senior vice president Telco operations at DENT Wireless, sees the next move for the blockchain startup as launching a full commercial service with a partner mobile operator: “Offering mobile data trading with DENT is a great opportunity for Telcos to attract and retain customers, to drive additional revenues and to create a positive brand image by giving customers a new and exciting way of engagement.”

PLDT’s customers seem to have been impressed by the chance to trade their mobile data, according to Joel Lumanlan, general manager of PLDT (HK) and it is easy to see how such a service could act as a differentiator in the market, giving a competitive advantage to early-adopting Telcos.

“Our test customers warmly welcomed the concept of a mobile data trading app which they could easily use to sell data that they don’t need or buy more data from others,” Lumanlan said, commenting on the trial.

Dentcoin is up 6.8% at midday EST today, at $0.029, according to coinmarketcap.com, although that’s after falling from $0.036 yesterday, as investors buy the rumour and sell the news.

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