New research from Celent predicts that adoption of mobile banking is set to increase rapidly in the major markets in Western Europe over the next two years as banks look to take advantage of improvements in technology to provide new services.
The study covered five Western European countries - Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the UK - and found that an average of six per cent of people over the age of 16 currently use m-banking services. Germany was found to have the lowest number of users in the study with just four per cent, while in Spain nine per cent of adults are signed up to services.
According to the study by 2010 m-banking adoption rates will rise to 25% in France, UK, Italy and Spain. In Germany 20% of adults will use m-banking services by 2010, according to the survey.
Celent says due to improvements in mobile technology and high mobile phone adoption rates in Europe banks are able to offer a wide range of added value mobile banking services.
European banks have already anticipated the dissolution of adoption barriers and have launched various mobile banking services mainly using the WAP and SMS technologies, says Celent.
Currently French and Spanish banks are offering a broader range of mobile services, followed by the Italian banks, says Celent. But there are still many disparities between the countries regarding the number and type of mobile banking services offered. At the European level, information services and SMS services are the most common.
Growing use of mobile Internet services will also result in an increase in the number of people using Web-based mobile banking services. The share of Internet mobile banking users in Western Europe should increase from 5% today to 18% in 2010, says Celent.
But despite improvements in mobile banking technology barriers to customer take-up still remain, with particular concerns about security, technological issues, the cost of mobile Internet and a general lack of awareness of the services.