In late May, United Kingdom payment-network operator VocaLinkreleased survey results from British consumers about mobile bankingand payments use. Theresultsreinforced the trend mobile payments are gaining traction withconsumers as 50 percent of respondents stated they are eitheralready or interested in using mobile payments in the nearfuture.
Though VocaLink’s researchhighlighted mobile payment adoption and use, it also presentedfindings on consumer use of mobile banking. With Mercator AdvisoryGroup’s CustomerMonitor Survey Series tracking similardomestic consumer trends in mobile banking, in addition to othertopics, it is possible to construct a loose comparison of Americanand British consumers and their attitudes and behaviors towardsmobile banking. The comparison should provide an interesting viewon whether consumers on either side of the Atlantic view mobilebanking services differently.
Both Mercator and VocaLink’s data show a younger demographic(18-35) is most likely to conduct mobile financial transactions.American and British consumers stated their preference for viewingchecking account balance as the primary activity conducted on theirmobile device. Whether a consumer owns a smartphone, however,greatly affects their mobile banking activities.
Some 26 percent of respondents conducted mobile-banking activitiesfrom a feature phone, but that figure jumped to 49 percent forsmartphone users, according to Mercator’s research. VocaLink’sfindings suggest the relationship between mobile banking andsmartphone ownership in the UK is even more split. Only 3 percentof respondents performed banking activities from feature phoneswhile 43 percent did soon a smartphone. British consumers favor atablet over Americans as 50 percent prefer that device comparedwith 32 percent.
Consumers concerns about mobile-banking security vary greatlybetween both countries, according to the surveys.
Some 48 percent of Mercator respondents stated a reason for notusing mobile banking for financial transactions was due to safetyconcerns. VocaLink’s research found 33 percent of respondentsstated mobile’s secure nature for conducting financialtransactions.
Overall, our comparison shows American and British consumers agreeon many aspects of mobile banking despite being separated some3,000 miles. Mobile banking availability, however, differs in bothregions as banks in the UK and Europe are just beginning to rollout broad mobile banking solutions. For British consumers inparticular, 2013 is an important year formobile banking as local financial institutions roll out a number ofnew mobile services (). Whether or not these new services changeBritish consumer habits and perceptions towards mobile banking willbe interesting to monitor.