Project Description

An early mobile money project: combining security and user experience for Orange’s own prepaid card app.

  • An early example of mobile money technology, now ubiquitous
  • User experience and security were equally critical
  • Multiple stakeholders: Penrillian had to manage both the network operator and card providers
“With mobile applications there are many factors that affect success, not all of them on the handset. By focusing on the customer’s brief of ‘usability, usability, usability’ we realised we had to address all of the factors that could have damaged the customer experience. To do this requires both a broad set of technical expertise and the ability to negotiate with all of the interested parties. This is where Penrillian excels.”
Charles Weir, Penrillian


Electronic payments are fast replacing cash, so consumers need a means to check their balance and move money around. Mobile phone applications are the obvious solution.

When Orange embarked on a project to launch its own pre-paid card, it turned to Penrillian to create the application and supporting infrastructure.

The Challenge

The finished product needed to strike the right balance between security and usability. The user experience had to be slick, and Orange didn’t want to be tied to a single card provider. That meant it needed to find an independent software company to build the application.

Penrillian had the experience, proven technical skills, and also a track record of managing complex projects with multiple stakeholders. Since the card provider’s infrastructure was not designed with mobile applications in mind, Penrillian would need to create some form of bridge between its servers and the mobile application. This meant working closely with both the brand and the card provider, which paid for some of the required development.


Penrillian started with a broad specification from Orange and progressively narrowed it down, testing assumptions and gathering feedback from all parties. We identified any gaps in the card provider’s systems, and developed a gateway to bridge the mobile app to their APIs, as well as designing the user interface.

The application went live across the UK for Orange’s pre-paid card customers. On time and on budget, Penrillian exceeded the customer’s brief, going beyond the application to ensure the right user experience.


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