Mobile Banking: It’s where the action is!

POSTED BY Global Administrator
Welcome to my first blog with Juniper Research. This is my first blog entry on the world of mobile commerce.

New Mobile Banking report

Well, what better week to start than the week that Juniper is publishing our new report on Mobile Banking?

I must say that I have found it an enormously fascinating area to research and I’ve been inundated with companies wanting to brief me on their latest products, developments and services – most frequently banks and vendors of platforms.

Types of mobile banking services

There are really two types of mobile banking services: informational (balance enquiries and so on) and transactional (bill payment for example).

Clearly financial information services are more widespread at the moment, riding on the back of the apparently never-ending love affair we all have with SMS. Latest figures in the UK from Ofcom for example show that we Brits sent 17.7 billion SMS/MMS messages in Q2 2008.

This equates to each of us (young and old, men, women and children) sending three a day. Mind you, this pales into insignificance having seen the news report on the UK’s GMTV earlier this week about the 13 year old girl in California who sent 14,528 texts in a month.  Her father received the bill....anyway, I won’t go there.

Suffice it to say that many banks are now offering SMS based services to tell us our latest balance or transaction.

Security concerns

Back to the report.

More and more banks are also giving debuts to transactional banking services that will work usually via mobile web or downloadable application. They are all paying – quite rightly and predictably of course – major attention to security.

As a member of the general public rather than a hi tech market analyst (or maybe as well as...) this would certainly be my number one concern:

·         What if I lost my phone?

·         What if someone was looking over my shoulder when I was doing a transaction?

·         What if my battery died in the middle of paying that bill I’d forgotten about and I picked a penalty charge as a result?

·         If my phone was stolen - would the thief get access to my bank account details?

·         What if....well you know what I mean by now.

I guess that phone banking and online banking have been through the same hoops and maybe still are to some extent.

My point is...no matter how good banks and vendors say security is (and it’s not that we don’t believe them because we do) - it’s the perception of the general public that counts.