The prevalence of mobile banking in Europe is soaring, with nearly half of phone owners now managing their finances through their handsets, new research commissioned by ING suggests.
A poll of nearly 15,000 people across 13 European countries a well as the US and Australia, shows that the share of mobile device users in Europe who bank through their phone has risen from 41% in 2015 to 47% this year. An even greater rise in adoption of 16% is expected in the next 12 months.
The surge is having a positive impact on money management, with 71% of mobile bankers in the 13 European countries surveyed indicating they manage their finances better as a result of using their phone for banking. And, for many respondents, the benefits of using mobile banking actually increase over time.
The Netherlands leads the way on adoption, at 63%, ahead of the UK on 55%. At the other end of the scale, just 22% of Romanians bank on their mobiles, although some 47% expect to within the next 12 months.
Mobile payments are also seeing steady growth, with 40% of European respondents have used an m-payments app this year, up from 33% in 2015. The key reasons for using mobile payment apps, as opposed to any other method such as cash are speed (cited by 53%) and ease of use (45%) - with the ability to use them in different locations (34%) also ranking highly.
The onward march of mobile is one contributing factor to the evolution of a ‘cashless society’. There is, however, significant variation in growth across the continent. While two thirds in Turkey and Italy agree they use physical cash much less than 12 months ago, less than a third of those in Austria and Germany are willing to give up their notes and coins.
Ian Bright, senior economist, ING, says: "The mobile revolution is not a fad. People not only want to use their mobile phone in their everyday life to manage their money but many also reckon it helps them manage their money better."