Fidor fuels O2 mobile banking launch
Telefónica Germany, in association with Fidor Bank, has launched its mobile banking offering, “O2 Banking”, in Germany.
As Banking Technology reported in May, Matthias Kröner, CEO of Fidor Bank, said the collaboration offers “the best of two digital worlds” – banking services via a mobile app and additional services from an O2 mobile contract.
The app for the “first mobile-only bank account by a mobile provider” is available for download free of charge.
Fidor says it takes a “few minutes” to open an O2 bank account – and it’s all done online.
The identity check is via a video link using a smartphone. To transfer money, customers have to enter the mobile phone number of the recipient in the address book and select it for a transaction.
The bank says the security standards for O2 Banking are the same as for a “normal” current account.
The O2 Banking MasterCard can be activated or deactivated directly at any time via the app, and the card details can be presented for online shopping, without having the physical card in hand.
A financial planning tool gives customers an overview of their spending and on request they can be notified in real-time of transactions and events by app push messages sent to their smartphone. Smaller consumer loans will be available directly via the app.
O2 phone contract holders “also benefit from a variety of perks and add-ons” when using O2 Banking, such as increased data allowances.
The service is initially only available in Germany, where O2 operates under the name of Telefónica.
The only way is up
In terms of mobile banking’s rise, there have been several developments this month alone.
British Bankers Association (BBA) says digital banking is in a “consumer-led revolution”. Its latest report – Way We Bank Now – shows a drastic increase in consumers using digital channels to manage their money. Mobile banking apps are now increasingly preferred to banks’ websites.
Société Générale has acquired a stake in TagPay, a French mobile banking firm, as it looks to develop mobile banking in Africa.
In the UK, Nationwide Building Society unveiled a new mobile banking app – and users can log on using Apple’s Touch ID biometric technology.
Russia’s largest banking group, Sberbank, is also going to launch mobile banking via a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO).