If you are an O2 user in Germany, you can now enter your phone number instead of a card number into your iTunes’ account information. Subsequent purchases from Apple Music, iTunes, the App Store and iBooks are then charged directly to your phone bill, or debited from a prepaid amount that a you have added to the phone if you are not on a contract.
Telefonica, the company that owns O2, has confirmed that feature is rolling out and will be available to all its customers by next month.
“Telefónica Germany is working with Apple related to carrier billing,” a spokesperson told TechCrunch an email. “Payment via the O2 phone bill is now available for Apple Music, iTunes, App Store and iBooks Store Purchases. The service is gradually being rolled out and will be available for all O2 customers (prepaid and postpaid) in Germany by the beginning of November 2015.”
It's speculated that Apple may be working with Bango, a carrier billing provider, to bring the functionality to iTunes. The move is thought to be especially beneficial in emerging markets where many customers do not have a credit cards or even bank accounts.