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Mobile banking rings up net victory

Date

Eric Johnston

Mobile technology is also changing how banks sell to their customers.

Mobile technology is also changing how banks sell to their customers. Photo: Karl Hilzinger

THE number of Australians now using mobile banking has exceeded 6 million, with the pace of take-up coming at a faster rate than internet banking.

While it took nearly four years for the 6 million figure to be reached for internet banking users, mobile banking hit this number in a little over three years, according to new figures released by financial services consultancy the Market Intelligence Strategy Centre.

The findings come after official data released by the Australian Communications and Media Authority show that almost half of Australia's adult population now owns a smartphone with 8.7 million using a smartphone in the past 12 months.

All the major banks have recently upgraded their in-house Android apps, the technology platform used by fast-selling smartphones such as Samsung.

They all also offer apps for Apple smartphones, but only some offer apps for Windows smartphones.

The introduction of mobile banking has seen demand for basic transaction services skyrocket.

Mobile technology is also changing how banks sell to their customers.

It is also providing a rethink among banks about how they use their vast and expensive branch networks.

Westpac, for one, has outlined plans to spend $240 million on an overhaul of its branch network in response to sweeping technological change.

With branches increasingly being used for advice rather than transactions, the shake-up will see the number of staff cut back and floor space reduced in some branches.

The head of Westpac's retail and business bank, Jason Yetton, recently said the advent of mobile banking "has completely altered the way our customers bank with us".

In its report on the mobile banking market, released on Monday, the Market Intelligence Strategy Centre said the already high use of internet banking and growth in faster mobile broadband speeds as well as smartphones had helped spur on uptake of mobile banking.

"While it previously took internet banking some 15 quarters to pass the 6 million users level, mobile banking has taken 13 quarters to achieve the same milestone," the MISC report said.

Further innovation, such as the spread of remote merchant payments and real-time deposits will help spur on further take-up of mobile banking, it says.

Commonwealth Bank, which has more than 2 million mobile customers, last year launched its Kaching mobile banking app, which allows users to transfer fund between friends even without the need for banking details.

A recent study by CBA found mobile banking use peaked at lunchtime and during the early evening.

9 comments

  • Not sure I would like to do my banking on an Android device given all the security concerns with that platform. Like google snooping and the script kiddies moving from PC to Android.

    Commenter
    Ray
    Location
    Melbourne
    Date and time
    February 04, 2013, 8:32AM
    • So you think banks are going to move into areas where there is "high risk"? I do not think so.

      Commenter
      Banana
      Location
      Melb
      Date and time
      February 04, 2013, 8:59AM
    • Probably wont be able to use banking on an iphone if they keep barring essential srrvices such as java.

      Commenter
      deevelooper
      Date and time
      February 04, 2013, 1:45PM
    • "..essential srrvices such as java".
      Ok. You win the prize for the most stupid comment so far.

      Commenter
      The Other Guy
      Location
      Geelong
      Date and time
      February 04, 2013, 2:22PM
  • Banks will have to move into the mobile banking arena - the customer demand will push that. There will just have to be a new technological advancement to allay the currently justified security fears. Security is the archilles heel of all mobile banking and mobile payments.
    Expect to see some news of security breaches - if the banks that are hit don't quietly cover their breaches up.

    Commenter
    robbied
    Location
    sydney
    Date and time
    February 04, 2013, 9:20AM
    • Please Commbank, do not clsoe your branches - the service I've gotten in branch the last few years has been nothing short of excellent.
      Sure I use netbank and on occasion the mobile site when necessary, but if I want to do anything more involved, like putting cash in, counting coins, changing accounts, updating my life insurance, or chaning my credit card limit I've been in a branch and thanks!

      Commenter
      Raida
      Location
      chewing salty razors
      Date and time
      February 04, 2013, 9:32AM
      • I too would be unlikely to risk banking with an Android (= viruses and trolls) - at least with the iPhone you know it is well sandboxed and Pple protects its app installation. I like my ANZ GoMoney app and use it often.

        I can see the change in teller services in practice. Last week I had to deposit a cheque in Macquarie bank using the NAB. My usual bank ANZ has tellers who deal quickly with customers and kiosks for more detailed transactions with personal service. The transaction in NAB involved waiting for 10 minutes while tellers at desks in the middle of the room dealt with mortgage issues and travel credit cards. I was number 1 and next in the queue for 10 minutes. My short time parking spot was ticking away!! So I hope the ANZ doesn't copy the NAB. Long queues are probably a marketing ploy to make the banks look as it they are busy.

        Commenter
        Coz
        Date and time
        February 04, 2013, 9:46AM
        • All banks have a encrypted sites. They have security that is tested and re-tested. The only problem with most online issues is you people. You don't have security on your units or pc's. you don't change your passwords regularly. It always someone else s fault. well its yours. I have worked in IT security for many years and the stupid stuff you see people do. write all their passwords on paper stuck to their monitors. Or in their wallets or on mobile phones. Password's with abcd1234 give me a break.

          Commenter
          It security
          Location
          Melbourne
          Date and time
          February 04, 2013, 9:48AM
          • A few years ago, I went to make a deposit at a branch of a major bank (starting with 'A'). They had introduced a new system, and their slogan was "Taking U out of the queue".
            You had to go to teller window 1, where told them what you wanted. They would then give you a ticket and ask you to sit down, on chairs along the walls. When your number came up, they'ed call you to one of the other tellers to make your transaction.
            Their new system not only took me out of their queue, it took me to another bank.

            Commenter
            The Other Guy
            Location
            Geelong
            Date and time
            February 04, 2013, 10:04AM
            Comments are now closed
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