Mobile Banking Is For The Young, Survey Reveals

Consumers between 18 and 34 tended to use their mobile phones for banking, Opinion Research found, especially if there were no extra fees involved.

W. David Gardner, Contributor

April 22, 2008

1 Min Read

In spite of Herculean efforts by the nation's largest mobile phone service providers and some of the country's major banks, mobile banking isn't catching on with all consumers, according to a new study prepared for IBM.

Conducted by the Opinion Research, the survey of 1,424 consumers with cell phones and bank accounts found that younger consumers between 18 and 34 tended to use their mobile phones for banking more than older consumers. The survey noted that 21% in the younger age group used mobile banking applications while just 10% of older consumers used mobile banking.

The nation's largest mobile phone service providers -- AT&T and Verizon Wireless -- have mounted extensive programs to lure consumers to mobile banking. AT&T launched its program last November and Verizon followed suit in January.

Consumers typically are asked to sign up with a financial institution to link a bank account to a mobile banking application.

Banks participating in both AT&T and Verizon programs include America First Credit Union, Arvest Bank Group, Bancorp South, FirstBank, Synovus, and Wachovia.

According to the study, nearly 85% of consumers would balk at paying a mobile banking fee. AT&T, for instance, doesn't require consumers to pay extra to carry out mobile banking on their cell phones, but it promotes a $10-a-month data plan that operates with the mobile banking application.

Mobile banking may be lying in wait to take off, according to another report released earlier this month by Juniper Research, which predicts explosive growth in mobile banking applications in a delayed reaction as interested builds up. Juniper said ten times as many consumers will likely be using mobile banking in 2011 compared to 2007.

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