Microsoft, eCHARGE Bundles MSN Fees with Phone Bills

Microsoft Corp. Wednesday announced an agreement with eCHARGE that will let MSN Internet Access subscribers have the monthly fee charged to their phone bill.

As part of the bundled billing agreement, Microsoft and eCHARGE will market the online payment company’s services on MSN Internet Access through direct and e-mail advertising campaigns.

The marketing effort is designed to heighten consumer awareness about the eCHARGE option. The campaign targets consumers who are hesitant to use their credit card online, due to privacy and security concerns.

Rob Bennett, Microsoft director of marketing for the consumer and commerce group, said the bundled billing option simplifies gaining access to the Internet through MSN services.

“We want to make it as easy as possible for people to get on the Web,” Bennett said. “The combination of MSN Internet Access and eCHARGE offers consumers top-quality Internet service with a convenient new billing option.”

Ron Erickson, eCHARGE’s chief executive officer, predicted the simplified billing program would attract subscribers to MSN Internet Access.

“The Internet is all about convenience, and eCHARGE is committed to making online payments as simple and powerful as possible,” Erickson said. “eCHARGE will bring more subscribers to MSN Internet Access because it helps to eliminate the No. 1 barrier to online payments, entering credit card information.”

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