Dropp was highlighted in Forbes on why micropayments are what’s next for content platforms, and how Dropp can elevate those platforms for both companies and consumers.
“A good example of the consumer model is Dropp, a micropayment platform built to offer pay-per-use or usage based pricing to the digital market…[SubscribeStar, Inara.World and Chillfiltr] are interesting examples of different types of content and I’m curious to see how the experiment evolves because as Sushil Prabhu (the Dropp CEO and Founder told me, these kinds of merchants ‘deserve a simple, straightforward way to make money in the constantly changing digital world’ and he is surely right.” David Birch, Forbes.
Read the full article here: www.forbes.com/sites/davidbirch/2022/04/30/new-ledgers-new-business-models-and-new-opportunities-in-micropayments/.
If I had a penny for every time someone asked me about micropayments…
This time last year I wrote here in Forbes that I thought we were heading up to “peak subscription” and that the economy was long overdue a friction-free micropayments infrastructure to deliver a different kind of internet, one based on content not advertising. Now I read in The Atlantic that we have reached peak subscription and that it may be that the average household is about to snap and start the cancellations.
Well, it seems to be that not only have we made our way up to Peak Subscription but we are already tobogganing down the other side. The latest figures from the UK indicate that around 1.5 million streaming accounts (such as Disney Plus, Netflix
(Another well-known subscription service, albeit in a different sector, Spotify has stock at an all time low, despite growing its subscriber base to an all time high of 182 million. Frankly, paying a few quid a month for all of the music in the world seems like good value to me, but it seems the markets are concerned about slowing growth in the numbers of subscribers.)
Perhaps it is time look at micropayments again, because it is not only streaming subscriptions that are under pressure. I have just cancelled annual subscriptions to a couple of apps that I don’t really use and a couple of online news subscriptions will go soon. And I really don’t want to pay $49/year for that text formatting app that I used twice, so there are some opportunity costs to think about here as well.
Now, let’s be clear. Subscriptions are not going to go away and in some sectors there is a continuing shift from products and services to subscription bundles. Apple, for example, is shifting to subscription models to sell both phones and services, and I am sure others will follow. But the general point holds: whether in the universe to the metaverse, the idea that subscriptions are the way forward for streaming, software and services is being challenged.
There are currently two options: pay-before services where the customer loads money into some sort of wallet that can make instant, no-risk payments to content creators and pay-later services that accumulate micropayments to the point where it becomes economic to obtain the funds for distribution. It might not be cost effective to charge ten cents to a credit card, but if you can manage the risk reasonably well (i.e., if you know the reputation of the parties) then you might allow the ten cents to stack up to ten dollars and then charge a credit card and distribute the funds.
If, however, there was a low-cost, low-overhead alternative to the existing payment infrastructure that could be used to send small amounts instantly and without credit risk, then surely there is a third pay-as-you-go option that might be more attractive.
Wot, No Blockchain?
Pay-as-you-go is where the early hopes for cryptocurrency were focused but remain unfulfilled. While the Bitcoin
Using the examples of the consumer models discussed above and the further example of “prosumers” who might be willing to sell self-generated data (e.g., data generated through their smart meters), they make the point that these applications demand a different kind of infrastructure.
What new shared ledger approaches might have much lower transaction costs? There are some “layer 2” developments in progress (such as the Lightning Network) but the authors point to other promising approaches to feeless micropayments that are not based on a blockchain at all but on a directed acyclic graph (DAG
The direction outlined above is already being explored. A good example of the consumer model is Dropp, a micropayment platform built to offer pay-per-use or usage-based pricing to the digital market. Their platform is built on the Hedera Hashgraph
Earlier this year, they began working with SubscribeStar (a platform for musicians, virtual artists, and educators), Inara.World (which enables authors to get paid directly for every page stream of their eBooks and for readers to discover eBooks by paying for one page at a time) and Chillfiltr (a content creator platform that shines a light on independent music, prose and poetry from around the world). These are interesting examples of different types of content and I’m curious to see how the experiment evolves because as Sushil Prabhu (the Dropp CEO and Founder) told me, these kinds of merchants “deserve a simple, straightforward way to make money in the constantly changing digital world” and he is surely right.
(The applications of micropayments go far beyond buying online media though. Take a look at what is going on in Scotland, where consumers are taking part in the Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) pilot. They first download the Recycle Glasgow app that enables them to scan the barcode on single-use plastic bottles and receive around 25 cents in a refund for every bottle they return to a smart recycling bin or a participating convenience store across the city.)
To see how the other example, the prosumer model, might develop, take a look at Helium
(For the technical Helium Network uses Proof of Coverage, PoC, that rewards users for verifying coverage, thus proving location and network connectivity. This is built on top of the Helium Consensus Protocol, which incorporates the HoneyBadgerBFT multi-party computation consensus protocol.)
The examples of both Dropp and Helium seem to indicate that there is real innovation in micropayment business models around shared ledgers and tokens, way out beyond the Bitcoin blockchain, cryptocurrency speculation and NFT madness.
Dropp Launches Payment Services for the Creator Economy Merchants SubscribeStar, Inara and Chillfiltr
Dropp adds three new merchants to its digital payment platform, which offers profitable monetization and viral growth options for content creators
At Dropp, we’re huge fans of what other innovative payment companies have achieved in the market. Major companies have all played essential roles in making online payments possible, changing everything for both merchants and customers.
As with many other industries, COVID-19 has exposed the need for a digital transformation in the legacy banking industry. Customers are demanding convenience and streamlined customer service that are not encumbered by the government-regulated constraints of legacy...