30 October 2007

Mobile banking must overcome consumer doubts

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Mobile banking
The San Jose Mercury News reports on why users need convincing that mobile banking is convenient and secure.

“South Bay residents Curtis McGovert, Dave Ritter and Leon Mendiola have at least three things in common. They own cell phones. They bank at Wells Fargo. And they didn’t realize that they effectively have an ATM in their pockets that they now can use to do some of their banking – anytime, anywhere.

Make that four things in common: As intriguing as “mobile banking” sounds to each of them, none is dying to try it. They either don’t see a clear need for it or worry that it’s vulnerable to hackers.

“I’m just a basic user,” said McGovert, a 33-year-old personal trainer from Milpitas. “I’m not into all the high tech. I’m old school.”

And there, in a nutshell, is the challenge that banks face as they race to roll out the next big thing for on-the-go consumers. To succeed, they must show customers it’s convenient and easy to use their cell phone to check balances, transfer money and watchdog their finances even if they’re miles from a computer.”

Although a good introductory article to the issue, it doesn’t contain a word on Africa, where mobile banking has taken off quite spectacularly and where mobile banking services are much more innovative than in the Bay Area.

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