KT has developed a blockchain-based system that can automatically settle roaming charges real-time.
The mobile carrier said on May 23 that the new system can settle roaming charges between carriers on a real-time basis, a job that previously took a month.
The new system uses smart contracts, which refer to self-executing contracts stored on the blockchain, which nobody controls and therefore everybody can trust. Smart contracts execute transactions if the pre-signed conditions are met.
In the past, roaming charges have been settled by carriers after checking the roaming information provided by international data clearing houses (DCH) and financial clearing houses (FCH). There have been problems in checking the real-time usage history through DCHs and FCHs, with considerable time and money wasted to adjust the errors.
The real-time automatic settlement system verifies and confirms the usage data that mobile operators exchange to provide roaming services to their customers. It settles the charges real-time if it finds no errors in the verification process.
Real-time billing is also possible if future block chain technology enables operators to access and control rate information real time.
Kim Won-kyong, managing director of KT marketing strategy, said the company would further develop its system through international cooperation. “When our system provides services stably, we will push for standardization so that it can evolve into a real-time automatic settlement system that can be used by global mobile carriers.”