It’s strange that I write yesterday about the issue of
getting customers to commit to mobile as their primary bank account, and the
next day we host a meeting in Warsaw that talks about innovations from Moven to
Fidor, Simple to mBank and the reaction of some of the audience is: oh, it’s
alright for the kids.
The attitude that prevailed was one of people who felt that much
of the mobile innovation focus is upon the iGen and is not relevant for their gen.
In particular, by way of illustration, several of the audience
are users of mBank, the mobile social bank in Poland. mBank offers two versions today: the old and the new mBank.
The old mBank offered a simple transactional interface in a traditional
online banking form. The new mBank
offers an amazing rich and functional experience from Facebook banking through to
Here’s the rub: who’s using the old mBank and who’s using the
According to my straw poll of the audience, or at least two
of them, they felt that much of the Facebook and mobile functionality was noise, and interfered with the ability
to manage their money.
They wanted simple interfaces that just showed them their
debits and credits and balances.
According to the same two mature gentlemen, their children
are happily moving to the new mBank though.
The issue is that those who have the money are their
generation and those who don’t are the next generation.
So I guess that answers yesterday’s question: we need to
wait for the iGen before this really
takes off and, if that’s the case, the high cost of redeveloping for social
mobile banking is so high that it’s not worth it if the audience is students and
But that would miss a key point.
Not all social mobiles are students and youth.
There are many mature users of such services and even those
who reject such fluff and noise today may find that they are forced to use such
mobile social capabilities tomorrow, at the very least in order to keep in
touch with their children.
So this is not that simple.
Or is it?
I don’t know. Time for a cappuccino.