New Zealanders are rapidly adopting smartphone apps to meet their banking needs. In the past year, the number of Kiwis conducting bank transactions through a smartphone app nearly doubled, according to a study by research firm Roy Morgan.
While a majority of smartphone users (58 percent) still bank online using a computer, 16 percent now conduct transactions on their mobiles — up from 8.3 percent in January 2012.
Interestingly, the pool of smartphone users who bank online also rose during the survey period, if only very slightly. There could be several explanations for this, the most plausible being that online customers are embracing an expanded range of options that increase their banking access and convenience.
Following are further observations from the New Zealand survey:
- Nearly one-third of Apple iPhone owners use a mobile banking app compared with just one-tenth of Samsung smartphone users, a disparity that's likely to shrink as more banks format their apps for the Android OS.
- Smartphones are no longer the preserve of early adopters — they are fast becoming mainstream.
- In Australia, more than 20 percent of smartphone users bank on their phones, while the slightly less than half bank online.
"Banks are rightly investing in mobile technologies to give their customers increased flexibility and security. The introduction of Near Field Communications technology — which allows smartphones to be used as a credit or debit card — will no doubt impact further on the trend," said Pip Elliott, general manager at Roy Morgan New Zealand.
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