"Brandon McGee, Industry Insider, Mobile Banking Guru...He is not only the real deal, a genuine industry insider, but also knows exactly what's on the minds of financial service pros as they contemplate the various mobile options." - Jim Bruene, Publisher & Founder, Online Financial Innovations

"Going Mobile. Local executive carves niche as national expert on fast-growing banking-industry technology trend" - Scott Olson, Indianapolis Business Journal (IBJ)

"Brandon McGee, the industry's unofficial ambassador for mobile banking" 

Friday, July 31, 2009

Mobile Banking Engine from MCOM

"International mobile banking solution provider, M-Com, today announced its new rendering engine for mobile financial services. The new rendering engine delivers an enhanced user experience for the broadest range of mobile devices, so that banks and credit unions that offer mobile banking via M-Com’s BankAnywhere platform can optimize the application functionality for the specific device in each consumer’s hands." >> Continue Reading

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

BofA Branch Reductions Due to Online and Mobile Banking

"BoA to shutter branches. Bank of America (BAC) is planning to slash the company’s 6,100-branch network by 10%, reversing two decades of coast-to-coast expansion. Bank officials reportedly attribute the closings to changes in customer preferences, citing the shift away from traditional branches in favor of online and mobile banking. A timeline for the closures wasn’t specified." www.eminimaster.com (Linked to Wall Street Journal)

Fiserv and Mitek Sign Deal

"Mitek Systems, Inc., an innovator of image analytics and mobile document capture applications, today announced that it has signed an OEM agreement with Fiserv, Inc., the leading global provider of financial services technology solutions, for Mitek's Mobile Deposit(TM) application that enables customers to deposit their personal or business checks using a cell phone camera. Mobile Deposit gives financial institutions the ability to provide consumers and merchants with quicker availability to funds and an extra level of convenience." >> Continue Reading

Monday, July 27, 2009

Mobile Banking Updates - Jul 27

iPhone taking mobile Banking to the Next Level

"One of which is the recent spike of market shares for the iPhone- that has risen from “5.3%” to “10.8%”. This is no doubt largely due to the latest release of Apple’s 3GS iPhone. I predict this rate of increase will continue to flow each year, if Apple continues to Wow the market with bigger and better versions of the iPhone at lower costs."

Mobile giving is catching on
"For most nonprofits, raising money means asking donors to write a check. But like music, maps and movies, charitable giving is also going mobile. With a mobile phone, donating to a cause can be as simple as typing MEALS, WATER or ALIVE."

Gartner Says Consumers Most Value Online Banking Features that Address Communication and Personalization
"Consumers most value online banking features that address communication and personalization, according to recent surveys by Gartner, Inc. However, financial institutions could be failing to capitalize on online banking by not providing the features that consumers really want."

Differentiation of online services
"I enjoyed reading the findings of a recent Gartner research report on online banking services. Gartner surveyed almost 4 000 consumers in the UK and the US. The findings ring true to what we are seeing in the industry. One of the findings (in my opinion) do have specific implications for banks."

How Losing Your Phone Could Cost You
"A lost or stolen smartphone is more than just an inconvenience.It can lead to identity fraud or corporate espionage,and even compromise the integrity of your medical records.In March, Connecticut-based security vendor Credent Technologies reported that 80 percent of users store on their phones information needed for identity fraud."

Cellphone banking - some lessons learnt
"It wasn't long ago that mobile banking was barely known by account holders in South Africa. It was only in 2001 that certain of the large South African banks launched a version of mobile banking. These services attracted little interest from account holders with most of the initiatives failing. As late as the beginning of 2005, the future viability of mobile banking was uncertain and disputed. Neither the local nor the international banks were actively developing mobile services."

Borrowing $300 from Mom and Dad? Your bank wants some of it
"Hopefully, you've never been there: You're looking at your bank account. It's sickly. It's dying. You need cash, or you're going to be fixing a tree bark salad soon. So you borrow money from your parents or maybe your well-heeled aunt."

Mobile Payments Talk with Hannes van Rensburg, CEO of Fundamo
"Fundamo is the largest dedicated supplier of mobile banking solutions, globally. We supply a software platform to mobile operators and banks that can be configured to offer various solutions (including mobile wallets) to customers. We are based in Cape Town and have offices in six other countries, amongst others in Madrid."

Mobile Banking and Lottery Tickets

Don’t queue: Bank by phone
"This week, FNB added Lotto tickets to the range of things its mobile users can buy — an impressive “turn the other cheek” approach, considering that FNB was forced to close its “million a month” savings accounts because the Lotto saw it as an infringement of its government monopoly."

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Mobile Banking Updates - Jul 22

Mobile Money Application Now Available on Apple App Store
"Monitise Americas today announced the launch of its Mobile Money application on the App Store. Mobile Money gives iPhone and iPod touch users simple access to their account information using a dynamic application that is easy to navigate and safe to use. Mobile Money is a leading global solution for mobile banking and payment services. It is the world's first mobile banking ecosystem, empowering consumers to perform banking and payment transactions using a single consistent interface -- regardless of choice of mobile operator."

Mobile Banking Use Jumps
"Mobile banking adoption tripled in a year, to 21% of consumers, among America's youngest adults, according to a survey that Mercatus LLC is expected to release today. 'We're approaching an inflection point where banks are no longer just testing mobile banking," said Robert B. Hedges Jr., managing partner of the Boston consulting firm. "It will be table stakes, where consumers are going to expect banks to offer these services to them.'"

Companies Count On Growth Of Mobile Banking
"Banks and other financial companies have their eye on your mobile phone. Now that 87 percent of people in the U.S. are carrying cell phones, big companies like MasterCard believe mobile banking could experience significant growth."

Bling Nation and Viaero Wireless
"Bling Nation, a mobile payments provider, announced its partnership with Viaero Wireless, a nationwide wireless network provider based in Fort Morgan, Colo., which provides national cellular coverage, to provide mobile payments to the La Junta, Colo. community."

MTN launches mobile banking service
"MTN subscribers will now be able to perform various banking transactions on their mobile phones. Known as the MTN Mobile Money. The service allows subscribers to pay for utility services, transfer money and buy air time credits for now."

Monday, July 20, 2009

Mobile Banking: Top Trends to Watch

I'm a little biased but here's a great article by Linda McGlasson of bankinfosecurity.com.

"Advice for those banking institutions still weighing whether to get into the mobile game: Do it. Now.

There are new customers and deposits to gain via mobile, say industry observers. And an added bonus: Mobile customers can prove more profitable than traditional bank customers. These are just two of the trends being watched by industry experts and practitioners, who see big growth in the demand for mobile banking services." >> Continue Reading

To learn more about Linda be sure to check out:
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/lindamcglasson
Twitter: http://twitter.com/InfoSec_Girl

Mobile Banking Updates - Jul 20

MasterCard Launches Priceless Picks iPhone Application
"MasterCard has announced the availability of the MasterCard Priceless Picks iPhone application which it says 'gives consumers a location-based utility to find and share their favorite picks with friends and family. Leveraging the iPhone’s GPS technology, users can instantly find shopping deals, entertainment options, dining venues and special experiences just steps away from where they are or where they’re traveling to, for business or for pleasure. Priceless Picks is available for free download at the iPhone App Store.'"

Mobile Apps: What's in Your Future?
"More predictions about the future of mobile devices are coming out of the MobileBeat Conference in San Francisco. Ilja Laurs, the head of GetJar -- a mobile device app store that boasts 14 million downloads monthly -- recently said that mobile phone applications "will be as big if not bigger than the Internet," according to the BBC."

Which bank will be first to embrace the mobile browser?
"The headline is the statement from Vic Vic Gundotra, Google Engineering vice president and developer evangelist: App Stores are not the future – Google"

7 Steps to Make Successful Mobile Money Offerings in Emerging Markets
"Mobile money services have huge potential in markets where mobile penetration vastly outpaces the number of people with bank accounts, according to Gartner, Inc. However, service providers, including banks and mobile operators will need to invest substantial efforts in building an "ecosystem" to make the service work within the local regulatory and business environment."

Ten Companies to Help You Make Mobile Phone Payments
"Mobile banking is becoming increasingly popular but there are still only a handful of companies out there that are offering good mobile payment systems. There are basically two types of these companies: those that let you use your phone to charge payments to your bank account and those that let you charge payments to your cell phone bill. Most of the companies that are working in this industry are independent startups but there are also a few huge industry players that are involved in this game."

Mitek Systems Launches Business Expense Management Application on the App Store

Mitek Systems, Inc. today announced its Mobile Receipt(TM) application is available on the App Store (SM). Mobile Receipt converts the photo of a receipt taken with the iPhone camera into a high quality image and, with a single tap, converts the data into a professional looking expense report. Mobile Receipt saves time, enhances productivity and can help speed reimbursements.

"The use of Mobile Receipt on iPhone translates into less wasted time, more accurate reporting, and faster expense reimbursement," said James DeBello, president and CEO, Mitek Systems. "In this case what's good for the employee is good for the company too." >> Continue Reading

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Mobile Banking - Intl Updates Jul 19

Phone company moves into banking
"Mobile phone operator O2 announced it has been branching out into the personal finance market in a bid to cash in on the growing demand for mobile banking services. The group has teamed up with high street bank NatWest to offer two pre-paid cards through its new O2 Money business."

Mi-Pay Mobile Money Focuses on Africa
"Mi-Pay, the global mobile money company, is building on its African achievements by confirming three new contract successes, which it expects to announce in detail over the next few months. With its international and domestic remittance services going live in North and West Africa; and a multi country roll-out of its agent-based, person-to-person, mobile money service already underway, Mi-Pay is fast emerging as a key partner and preferred supplier for operators and banks as they seek to make financial services accessible to Africans across the Continent."

Vodacom Tanzania Signs Local Bank for M-Pesa Mobile Banking Service
"Vodacom Tanzania has officially signed up BOA Bank to provide Vodafone M-PESA services to its clientele. Both prepaid and post-paid Vodacom customers are able to open a Vodafone M-PESA account at no cost at any our authorised agents and now BOA Tanzania. Most importantly about Vodafone M-PESA, any person from any mobile subscriber can receive money via M-PESA on their mobile phone."

PayMate To Provide Mobile Banking Solutions To Syndicate Bank
"While PayMate has till date tied up with 22 banks and provided them with its mobile payment services and applications, PayMate will now also be offering mobile banking applications which will include non-financial transactions as well."

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

NFC Pilots and Implementations - ContactlessNews.com

This article (NFC Pilots and Implementations by ContactlessNews.com) is THE best summary I've ever seen on contactless pilots and implementations. The article covers 2005 to present and includes work done in: U.S., France, South Korea, China, UK, Japan, Netherland, Taiwan...etc, etc,etc >> Continue Reading

Mobile Banking Updates - Jul 14

Macalla honoured in sixth annual International Business Awards
"Macalla, leader and innovator in mobile payments solutions, has announced that it has earned a Certificate of Finalist Recognition in the category of Best New Product or Service of the Year - Computer Hardware or Software in the 2009 International Business Awards."

Yes to mobile banking, no to paying for it
"Despite 59 percent of consumers stating that online banking on their mobile phone is important to them, they are not willing to pay for it, KPMG's Global Consumers and Convergence survey reveals."

Mobile Banking Without Your Bank
"British consumers who want to conduct mobile transactions and P2P payments no longer have to wait for their bank to offer the functionality. A new disintermediator, dubbed MoBank and built by First Direct and Egg bankers Steve Townsend and Dominic Keen, now gives Apple iPhone users a broad range of mobile commerce functionality."

Bank Of Mexico Issues Rules For Mobile Payment Services
"The Bank of Mexico said Monday that it has issued rules for mobile payment services as part of a broader initiative by the central bank and the government to make financial services available to more people."

Mobile payments: Will Colombo keep its leadership in South Asia?
"A recent Central Bank (CB) statement that a framework for mobile payments would be finalized in 2009 raised much interest in financial and communication circles in the region. The press statement does not make the objectives absolutely clear but it is expected to be an advance on what is available today in the Sri Lankan market."

Mobile Marketing Security
"In less than 12 months, the Apple App Store has revolutionized the global mobile industry. It has helped usher in a new wave of applications and services which, combined with the greater availability of open mobile networks, lower mobile data costs and the wider variety of Smartphones, has helped create a new type mobile communications experience…one dominated by a new generation of content, entertainment and social networking."

Are you ready for small to be the new big?
"We’re all fashion victims. Mobiles are basically fashion accessories with electronics inside. Technology itself has fashions, at the moment the pendulum has swung towards thin architectures and cloud services for example. But at some point thick clients will return to stride the techno-catwalk again, and we’ll all rediscover how nice it is to have a user interface that isn’t a browser."

Monday, July 13, 2009

Mobile Banking Updates Intl - Jul 13

This first article is a little dated, but a friend shared it with me last week because I didn't realize that the iPhone was stuggling in Japan...

Why the Japanese Hate the iPhone

"What’s wrong with the iPhone, from a Japanese perspective? Almost everything: the high monthly data plans that go with it, its paucity of features, the low-quality camera, the unfashionable design and the fact that it’s not Japanese."

Want a motivator for US migration to chip cards?
"Saw this in Cardline: 'European banks could stop accepting magnetic stripe credit and debit cards once European financial companies complete the switchover to the chip-based cards as expected by 2011, says European Payments Council chairman Gerard Hartsink. European banks’ agreement to implement such a prohibition could be detrimental to U.S. cardholders who travel to Europe.' Gee really? You think?"

MCB Announces the launch of millions of branches!

"MCB has recently launched their mobile banking and payment solution. It is an Internet based service that runs on your mobile phone’s browser. You can link your MCB account with your phone number and that’s all you need to use the service. The basic set of services provided by the solution are:"

Kenya: Will the Real Banks, Please Stand Up?
"The amazing growth and success of Safaricom's M-Pesa mobile money transfer service has made Kenya a focal point of growing international interest in mobile commerce and sparked excitement over the transformative potential of mobile banking for unbanked populations around the world. M-Pesa is certainly an impressive and innovative service applied to a very clear value proposition within Kenya, peer-to-peer money transfers."

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Mobile Banking Updates - Jul 12

Visa Trying To Pick A Mobile Winner?
"Last week, Visa announced an alliance with Monitise plc, a major player in the mobile banking & payments space. This announcement was significant given that the mobile banking & payments space is very hot these days, and continues to be billed as “the next big thing” in payments."

GSMA launches Mobile Money Exchange to support financial services companies
"The body representing the worldwide mobile communications industry, GSMA, presented its Mobile Money Exchange initiative at the Annual Mobile Money Summit in Barcelona, Spain. Through this initiative, the GSMA intends to support financial services companies, entering the mobile environment, by providing a common voice and formal business forum for business collaboration. Mobile Money Exchange builds on the Mobile Money Program that the GSMA implemented in 2006 and which was very successfull in terms of building a global community."

The Smartphone Chess Board
"With so much buzz on the iPhone and its alleged “killer” competitors, many developments occur behind the scenes that are often overlooked. Industry stalwart Blackberry still retains a relatively large portion of the market but must continue to enhance their phone’s capabilities to keep the iPhone in their sight."

Corporate Branding Races to iPhone Apps: Winners and Losers
"iPhone apps are probably the most popular thing to be used since the color TV. We've seen companies of all sizes put together some really cool concepts for iPhone apps. While most of these applications exist only as marketing techniques, some of them are quite useful. The question is, however, are they meeting the expectations of iPhone users?"

Friday, July 10, 2009

Mobile Banking Report from comScore

GoMo News posted snippits of a recent comScore report this morning. Interesting, 31% of mobile banking users access the service while at home (ie sitting next to their pc). Continue reading >>

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Mobile Banking - Firethorn

Firethorn Increases Mobile Banking Security With Full PCI Compliance
"Firethorn Holdings, LLC, a Qualcomm company (Nasdaq: QCOM), today announced enhancements to its mobile banking and payments application to adhere to the industry's most rigorous benchmark for secure credit card transactions - the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standard (DSS)."

Is It Time to Ditch the Laptop for a Smartphone?
"When I suddenly realized that I'd forgotten to pay a bill, the iPhone also offered a solution. Using Mobile Banking on AT&T, a free program developed by Qualcomm's Firethorn, I was able to transfer funds and pay my bill online, much to my relief."

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Mobile Banking - Citi

Mobile Banking Microsite - Citi

Citi-SK Telecom Venture Expanding
"Mobile Money Ventures LLC, a mobile banking and payments joint venture between Citigroup Inc. and the South Korean wireless carrier SK Telecom, expects to launch its services in six more Asian countries by yearend. Steve Kietz, the company's chief executive, said he expects it to go live in Singapore late in the third quarter and expects "two or three more installations" in North America."

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Mobile Banking - International Updates

Japan’s DOCOMO to Launch Mobile Payments Service
"Customers of DOCOMO’s i-mode™ mobile Internet service on the FOMA™ 3G network will be able to remit up to 20,000 yen (about 208 U.S. dollars) per transfer, basically just by inputting the payee’s mobile phone number."

Emirates NBD & Etisalat collaborate to launch Mobile Banking
"Emirates NBD the largest bank in terms of assets within the region will partner with Etisalat to launch a new state-of-the-art mobile banking service. This new service will offer customers the convenience of banking on the move. Customers will be able to make account balance inquiries, transfer funds, pay their credit card bills and make payments to Etisalat, RTA, Fly Dubai, FEWA, and more others."

Mobile Money World Conference 2009
"Mobile Money World Conference 2009 will be held on 29 to 30 July 2009 in New Delhi, India to discuss on strategies to develop the best business model and new business partnership in delivering mobile financial services to the mass market."

The Hype Cycle and Mobile Banking, 2009
"Just over a year ago in Cairo, we convened the first Mobile Money Summit with our friends at the GSMA, DFID and IFC. The diversity of the crowd was fantastic - people from all over the world and all sorts of business - from mobile network operators to vendors to financial institutions. It might sound corny, but Hannes Van Rensburg captured the mood quite well: “A general spirit of: ‘Let’s build the industry’ rather than criticise each other prevailed.” (Mobile Payments have arrived)"

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Beware of iPhone Mobile Banking Reviews

On Friday I was browsing through the mobile banking applications in the iPhone app store, and discovered something a little surprising...the scores/rankings are a little skewed.

For instance, I know that the Firethorn app (ie Mobile Banking on AT&T) is very solid yet they are #15 on the list. A little confused, I decided to dig deeper into the customer reviews to see where they were losing points.

After reviewing the first 40 entries I discovered that on 15 of the 40 rankings Firethorn had scored poorly because the reviewer was upset that banks such as Hagerstown Trust and Ephrata National were not participating banks. As it stands today the Firethorn app receives 3 of 5 stars, but if you subtract out the garbage entries they actually score a much more impressive 4.5 of 5.