Universal Payment Gateway
With UNIPAY, a telecom operator can implement payment services to allow its subscribers to quickly refill their accounts with a credit or debit card or other payment means and help them stay connected no matter how many mobile devices they have.

Subscribers have become obsessed with being connected at all times. It is one of their greatest concerns. You cannot be sure that you are connected unless you can top-up your mobile account at any time. Given that payment kiosks are often out of reach, online services are unavailable unless you have an internet connection and SMS commands cannot be sent unless your balance is not below a certain limit, it might be quite a challenging task. Add to this the fact that almost every subscriber today has more than one mobile device (modems, tablets, sat navs and other smart devices), with each of them having a SIM card in it, a number and, hence, an account that has to be refilled on a regular basis.


Account Refill with a Bank Card

When a subscriber sets up account refills with a debit or credit card, the subscriber’s phone number gets linked to the card’s number at the level of the telecom operator’s IT infrastructure (Figure 1). The bank card number is registered in the operator’s service profile database, with subscribers being able to refill their mobile device accounts instantly via any self-service interfaces (SMS, USSD, IVR, a self-service portal) even when they have a zero balance.

In addition, subscribers can limit the amount that can be charged to their bank cards by setting a certain value (for example, not more than 1,000 rubles per day). As part of the refill service, the operator can also enable subscribers to set up auto refills; the auto refill option allows subscribers to have their mobile device accounts refilled upon reaching a certain predefined threshold (subscribers can set up a different auto refill threshold and amount for each phone number they might have).

The UNIPAY-based implementation of the refill service includes support for the protocols of Russia’s leading acquiring banks like GazpromBank and Raiffeisenbank. The solution can handle multiple acquiring banks at a time. In addition, the UNIPAY solution meets the PCI DSS requirements as to bank card data processing and storage.


Auto Refill

The UNIPAY-based auto refill service allows subscribers to set up automated mobile device account refills upon reaching a predefined threshold. With this service, subscribers do not have to worry about staying connected; the only thing they need to do is to set up the auto refill option for each of their phone numbers by specifying a balance threshold for refills. Money for refills can be provided with bank cards, e-wallets or e-accounts; the payment mean itself is not registered in the UNIPAY database

A subscriber can activate the service for one or more mobile numbers and set up a different threshold and auto refill amount for each device (phone number). The main benefit of the auto refill service for subscribers is that once they set up a balance threshold and a payment amount they don’t have to look for a payment kiosk, send any USSD or SMS commands, make any promised payments or check the account balances of their various devices (modems, tablets, sat navs), as their accounts will be refilled automatically, and they will always have access to the telecom operator’s services.



Maintaining and increasing subscriber loyalty and the quality of service through an extended set of financial tools for users


Increased ARPU and reduced accounts receivables


Ready-to-use web-based interfaces and an API for developing customized customer care and self-service interfaces


  • A single UNIPAY instance can interoperate with multiple instances of the telecom operator’s billing system
  • The security of subscribers’ bank card data is ensured with 3D Secure technology
  • The refill service can be set up both via the interfaces provided by the telecom operator and via partner banks
  • Supports multiple partners and transaction protocols
  • Can interoperate with multiple billing systems a service provider might run
  • Implements two balance control modes: regular checks of the accounts associated with the connected devices; processing of messages from external systems about thresholds reached
  • Fully supports the protocol of Sberbank’s Auto Refill system (applies to Russia only)
  • Controls all steps, from charging to adding money to the account (protection against uncontrolled charging)
  • Does not require PCI DSS certification because no bank card data is stored or processed by the telecom operator