"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" 

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Mobile Banking Updates - Jun 5

Dark Side Arises for Phone Apps
"As smartphones and the applications that run on them take off, businesses and consumers are beginning to confront a budding dark side of the wireless Web. Online stores run by Apple Inc., Google Inc. and others now offer more than 250,000 applications such as games and financial tools. The apps have been a key selling point for devices like Apple's iPhone. But concerns are growing among security researchers and government officials that efforts to keep out malicious software aren't keeping up with the apps craze.

In one incident, Google pulled dozens of unauthorized mobile-banking apps from its Android Market in December. The apps, priced at $1.50, were made by a developer named "09Droid" and claimed to offer access to accounts at many of the world's banks. Google said it pulled the apps because they violated its trademark policy."

Western Union reveals international mobile strategy
"Money-transfer giant Western Union discussed its mobile strategy and the hottest trends in the mobile financial services ecosystem in an exclusive interview. Earlier this year, Western Union extended the reach and accessibility of its money-transfer services with mobile finance initiatives in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East and Asia (see story). Last year, the company tapped Sybase 365 to launch initiatives to interact with and engage its consumers with SMS-based notifications and mobile marketing campaigns (see story)."

Why Android Is Attractive for Alt-Payment Companies
"A growing number of mobile payments companies are promoting systems that charge purchases to users' phone bills rather than credit or debit cards. Since Apple Inc.'s tight control of the iPhone precludes this approach, the payments firms are gravitating to Google Inc.'s Android — which itself is emerging as the handset of choice for the consumers most likely to use their phones for banking and financial activities. On Wednesday, Zong Inc. and Boku Inc. each introduced tools that let software developers weave their payments systems into applications for Android phones. These systems could be used, for example, by a video game developer to sell additional levels to someone who has downloaded a game that was given away for free."

More Consumers Embracing Online Banking, Bill Pay
"Fiserv’s survey also looked at the growth in such new areas as mobile banking and person-to-person payments. This year, 30% of respondents with mobile phones conducted one or more banking services using their phones, up from 23% who did in 2008. The percentage of mobile-banking users who receive or pay bills using their phones jumped to 30% this year from 18% in 2008, primarily because more consumers have smartphones, Fiserv says."

Monitise Americas Offers Enhanced Mobile Banking to Financial Institutions Across the US
"Monitise Americas, the leading mobile banking and technology company, is delighted PyraMax Bank has launched an iPhone app powered by its technology. The release heralds a turning point in the mobile banking industry. Until now, bank-branded iPhone applications have been the privilege only of big-spending, large banks. However, thanks to its world-class technology, Monitise Americas can now build iPhone apps quickly and cost effectively, enabling mobile banking for many more financial institutions than previously possible."

US mobile payments adoption at tipping point: new Obopay president
"Mobile payments have reached a tipping point in terms of consumer adoption in the United States, according to mobile banking and payments provider Obopay Inc.’s newly appointed president. Last week Obopay announced the appointment of Deepak Chandnani as Mumbai, India-based president of Obopay, which is a newly created position. In this new role, Mr. Chandnani will lead global operations for Obopay across all markets and geographies and continue to report to Carol Realini, founder/CEO of the company."

ING Mobile Banking Promo
"We recently introduced a mobile banking application for the BlackBerry and iPhone. It’s a simple, relevant & innovative way to put banking in your pocket. We think we can leverage this cool new app to reiterate that ING DIRECT is an unconventional-but-relevant, hip, witty and innovative brand.

The task: To create a :30 online video that introduces, with pizzazz, our Mobile Banking application—and shows that ING DIRECT has once again revolutionized banking."

U.S. Banks are Losing The Tech Creativity War
"Brett King is a Hong Kong-based financial services technology consultant, president of his own firm User Strategy, and a firm believer that American banks are behind the eight-ball when it comes to the innovation imperative.

You're going to start to see this payments space quickly morph around the mobile device. The banks really just have to get on board with this, and give incentives and encourage customers to use this. They say, 'Well, we're worried about security and all those sorts of things.'

The reality is this is going to happen with or without them, so it's better to think about how to get this stuff done rather than say, 'We prefer to stick with checks because that's what we're comfortable with.'"

Reaching for Apps Beyond Banking
"They're one of the last top 10 North American banks to launch mobile banking, but TD Bank is hoping to leapfrog the competition somewhat with plans to offer not just mobile banking capabilities but also a range of other ancillary services via the smartphone platform.

Joan Dal Bianco, vp of the online channel at TD, sees a revolution in the potential of smart phones to change how consumers access banking-particularly when banks are able to look beyond providing only traditional financial services. 'Mobile will do more than the Internet did, and do it more rapidly,' says Dal Bianco. 'It took the Web a decade to take hold. Mobile will take just another year or two.'"

The Bank of Santa Barbara Selects Premier(R) from Fiserv
"Fiserv, Inc., the leading global provider of financial services technology solutions, today announced that The Bank of Santa Barbara, a full-service commercial bank focused on serving professionals, non-profit organizations and small- to medium-sized businesses, has selected the Premier(R) bank platform from Fiserv to provide an enterprise-wide technology solution. The bank's new partnership with Fiserv will deliver comprehensive integrated solutions, including account processing, electronic banking and bill pay."

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