But mobile services are building some visible-to-the-naked-eye trends that show it will become a must-have channel that may finally justify the decade-long hype.
For starters, mobile banking is likely to surge to five percent of online banking households this year, predicts Celent, as usability improves and the interested parties (banks, carriers, handset manufacturers, vendors and card companies) converge on technology and business-line issues like payments and security. Within three years, service rollouts combined with consumer acceptance-the same ingredients that fueled online banking adoption-should make m-banking mainstream, reaching 35 percent of online banking households.
Half of all calls into bank customer centers are from cell phones, so Celent's Dan Schatt sees a natural transition to mobile Web-based balance inquiries and simple transfers. But there is a distinction between mobile Web-based banking and mobile network access through proprietary software. The latter is likely to overtake mobile Web banking thanks to greater ease of use and customization. And banks are likely to prefer proprietary software since it will make switching banks all the harder.
Recruiting Gen Y users will be most banks' priority. Ninety percent of the under-25 set already have data capabilities on their phones. And more than half of younger users say they will consider mobile banking offerings when choosing a bank.
Source: Bank Technology News and SourceMedia, Inc.