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Top it Up - What's New? Top it Up!

16 September 2003
Written by Patrick Tsang

Imagine running out of credit for your prepaid mobile phone and not being able to make calls, and even worst, the shops are shut and you don’t know where else to get a recharge from. Well, for all the prepaid users out there, here is some good news for you! Introducing “TopitUP”, a quick, easy, convenience system and best of all, it’s FREE! =)

Current prepaid mobile phone recharging system works by purchasing a recharge card with a recharge value such as $30, $50 or $100 in them. These cards can be uniquely identified with their 10 or 12 digits hidden in a scratch panel at the back of the card. After the digits had been obtained, the user would then be required to call up their service provider’s access number (e.g. '555' for Optus, '1511' for Vodafone, '1258888' for Telstra) and 'punch in' their recharge digits for topping up their service. Recharge cards could be purchase from places such as petrol stations, newsagents, convenience stores and other participating stores.

By using TopitUP, it allows prepaid users to top up and pay (via their cheque or savings account) for their recharge codes by simply requesting and receiving the appropriate code number via an SMS text message from their phone.

To use the TopitUP service, first register at www.topitup.com.au to set up your mobile number, bank account details and password. Next you send an SMS to TopitUP containing only your password for your account, to this number “0412 TOP UPS” (0412 867 877). A Top-Up voucher would then be sent back to you within 5 minutes, containing your recharge card digits. This recharge card digit would have the preset amount in dollars you set when you registered for this service. You would then need to call up your service provider and use the digits obtained from the Top-Up voucher to recharge your prepaid mobile phone services. The recharge amount would then be deducted from your specified bank account at the end of the day.

In the case when your prepaid mobile have no more credit left even to send an SMS to request for topping up your service, you may use another mobile phone number to request the Top-Up voucher to be sent back to your own phone by including your password in that other number’s SMS. This other person could be on any network, and doesn’t have to be on the same network as you! If you accidentally deleted the Top-Up voucher before you used the recharge digits, never fear! Simply send another request as per normal and you'll receive the same voucher number back again. You've got a 24 hours 'window' to do this or 3 times, which ever comes first! =)

By using TopitUP, a recharge voucher number can be requested from your mobile phone anywhere and at anytime. No more queuing up at petrol stations and no more special trips to find a shop that sells recharge vouchers for your service providers. Also it’s absolutely free! TopitUP doesn't charge any fees to prepaid users who register for this service.

Call credits seem to expire when you need them most. By being able to recharge at a moments notice ensures that if an emergency arises you can get back on the 'air'. TopitUP is structured so that you always have one voucher number in your account ready to use. That's peace of mind just in case you needed it but do not have the money to recharge for an urgent call when needed!

This recharge service is currently available to Optus, Boost, Communic8, Vodafone, AAPT and Virgin prepaid mobile customers. Other carrier's products will be released over time. TopitUP prepaid mobile top up via SMS is simply the first of many such services to be offered. In the future, other similar services for other products such as prepaid internet, ring tones, logos, transport, fast food etc. will also be made available.

At this stage, TopitUP services do not accept credit cards as payment options. However, they are pursuing this as a future payment method. We at iMobile would be very interested to try these new services hopefully in the near future! =)

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