Intuit Inc. and AT&T Corp. Monday jumped into the battle for a share of the electronic billing market with a system that they said would give billers a higher level of contact with customers.

Unlike bill presentment models developed by Checkfree Corp. and MSFDC- the joint venture of Microsoft Corp. and First Data Corp.-the group's Open Internet Billing model does not require billing data to reside at a third- party consolidator's Web site.

Instead, the Intuit-AT&T system, developed with Just in Time Solutions Inc., would allow consumers to link directly to billers' Web sites to receive detailed billing information. They would receive notifications of bills due and basic bill summaries by visiting either their bank's Web site or Intuit's Quicken.com.

The system uses the Open Financial Exchange home banking protocol developed by Intuit, Microsoft, and Checkfree to exchange summary billing information. - Drew Clark

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