One large scale billing project started for us in 1999. Unlike our other projects we were the front end billing system. The product involved was a post-paid calling card connected to a credit card. The rewards plan was free calling minutes – the more you used the credit card the more free minutes you got.

Although this started off small, this project ramped up quickly until our servers were working thousands of calls per hour. The customer service reps for this task connected to our system using web browsers to our site over a secure connection to a large server-side JavaScript system. Over time additional features were offered to customers such as pagers, home long distance and – for a short amount of time – cell phones.

The growth of the cell phone industry was the end of this project, however. Between 1999 and 2004 the number of cellphone users in the US doubled to 70%. The original market for these calling cards/credit cards was students – for making long distance calls from their dorm rooms, in particular – and with cell phone demographics skewed towards the 18-29 group, the drop was even more evident.

Over the life of the project (through 2006) millions of accounts and calls were processed, encompassing the life of the account from creation, through billing through collections.