Smartphones are growing just as rapidly in Britain as anywhere else... well, maybe not as rapidly as South Korea, but pretty rapidly. They’re ahead of Germany but not quite up to France.
And there’s a market for mobile banking via smartphone, although Brits aren’t the most gung-ho when it comes to banking via mobile. Nevertheless, Halifax and the Royal Bank of Scotland see opportunities there, as each have launched mobile banking apps to help customers manage their accounts on-the-go.
More than a third of the people in the UK use a smartphone, but as TMC noted a couple weeks ago, mobile banking is less popular in the UK than elsewhere, with only 27 percent of Brits surveyed reporting that yes, they had used some form of mobile banking in the past six months. For comparison purposes, globally 52 percent of people have.
It’s certainly not because they hanker for that famed British customer service, so what could it be? A KPMG report identifies “concerns over the potential for credit card information to be intercepted by an unauthorized party” is the reason given by 66 percent of survey respondents, and “the threat of unauthorized parties accessing personal information” was the reason of 62 percent, although this reporter wouldn’t be shocked if there were quite a bit of overlap between those two groups.
This is where Royal Bank of Scotland and Halifax see an opportunity: Maybe Brits are just waiting for the right apps, available across all popular smartphone platforms, including Blackberry, Apple, Android and Nokia (News - Alert)?
The apps will allow customers to access any of their accounts, said David Nicholson, group director of the Halifax Community Bank, who observed that "the use of mobile apps to assist day-to-day activities -- like banking – on the go is more popular than ever, especially apps that provide customers with everything they need in one place.”
As well as accessing accounts to view their balance, make transfers and pay bills, customers will also be able to locate nearby financial services, Nicholson says, adding that “this is another example of Halifax delivering new and innovative ways to support our customers, ensuring advancements in technology can be used to improve our customers’ experience.”
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Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO. Follow us on Twitter.David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.
Edited by Carrie Schmelkin