Majority of Brits to use m-money by 2015

The majority of Britons will be using their mobile phone to manage their bank accounts, pay bills and make purchases within the next three years, according to new research.

The research into mobile banking and the changing nature of consumer trends by the Future Foundation think-tank, commissioned by Monitise, the global enabler of Mobile Money services, reveals that the number of Britons who manage their money on their mobile has doubled in two years to almost 10 percent of the population today.

This number will exceed 50% in the next few years as banks and retailers take advantage of the widespread adoption of smartphones, apps and 3G phone networks to deliver new services.

A major factor will also be the emergence of ‘tap-and-go’ payments using Near Field Communications, plus an increase in the range of Mobile Money services, e.g. person to person payments, location-based offers, shopping, transport, ticketing and entertainment.

The Future Foundation report, ‘Emerging Trends in Mobile Banking’, commissioned by Monitise surveyed 1,000 adults and found that Britain’s growing army of mobile bankers.

Altogether, 57% have used mobile banking more frequently in the past year than they did in the previous year, and 68% find banking on the handset easier than over the internet. Plus 70% of mobile bankers are very keen to use their mobile to buy things.

The report also highlights how consumers’ desire for ‘simple complexity’ – the ability to do complicated things easily and intuitively – will help shape the development of mobile banking. SMS texting, for example, appears clunky compared to a slick smartphone app.

This preference for the ‘simple complexity’ of mobile banking is borne out by the fact that many mobile money activities, including bill payments, balance transfers and checks, actually happen at home, despite the presence of a broadband-connected computer in the household.

The Future Foundation also found that while users of mobile banking interact with their bank more frequently than the general population, they are using their mobiles for an increasing proportion of those interactions – mainly at the expense of branch visits and call-centre banking.