If you’ve been reading the Visible Banking blog for quite some time, you know I am a fan of Aman Narain, Global Head of Internet and Mobile Banking at Standard Chartered, and the Breeze team.
Since 2007 Citi has been active in the mobile banking space, especially in Asia, via their JV with SK Telecom, Mobile Money Ventures. I invite you to watch my interview with their former CEO, Steve Kietz that I shot in Singapore at Retail Banking Innovations 2008.
Under the leadership of Aman, Standard Chartered has become the most innovative bank in mobile banking in the last 12 to 18 months. They are also constantly finding new engaging ways to leverage social media and promote their innovative mobile banking services: last year, they launchedthe World’s Coolest Intern contest and successfully received close to 1,200 applications from over 65 countries. I invite you to watch my interview with the winner, Katherine Liew.
InMode: a Crowdsourced Design Contest
Mid March I received an email from who let me know that they had recently launched InMode, a new social media initiative to source visual designs for Breeze background screens in partnership with frog design, the global design firm that partnered with us in designing the user interface of Breeze.
Indeed, the wall papers in Breeze change not only based on the time of the day but also for festivals, events and international themes. In the past we have had such wall papers for Chinese New Year, Christmas etc. but the Breeze team are looking to expand this to a greater variety.
Last week, the Breeze team announced the first 10 winners on their blog.
This is kind of SC’s first entry into crowdsourcing. If you are interested in crowdsourcing projects in banking, I invite you to read my articles on the Webank WePad project and Danske Bank’s Idebank on facebook.
WishList: Goal Oriented Savings “a la Smartypig”
As confirmed at FinovateEurope, PFM / budget tools have never been as popular, and most banks are currently looking to provide budget management tools to their online banking customers in order to differentiate themselves, target duo customers, accelerate adoption and drive usage of online banking.
Giving tools to manage your budget is one thing, but changing people’s behaviour is another. We all know that people are not interested in financial products as such, but they are looking to achieve personal goals, life goals. I’ve been a raving fan of Smartypig since the popular goal-oriented savings startup launched a couple of years ago.
In the last twelve months, the market validated the need for such a service with Yodlee which now offers its users the possibility to create goals, Credit Agricole in France which iPhone app included a basic goal feature, and now Standard Chartered Breeze with their WishList feature which includes a “share on facebook” app just like Smartypig. This is BRILLIANT.
The facebook application is only available to SC Breeze’s users, but I can’t wait to get hold of some stats when I’ll shoot my video interview with the team in the next few weeks.
I invite you to check the screenshots and watch the video below.
BreezeLiving: an iPhone App combining Augmented Reality and Location-based Coupons
Last but not least, the Breeze team in China launched BreezeLiving. Basically, it is an iPhone app which provides location-based services displayed via three views (Augmented Reality, Map, and List) and searchable via category, partner, hot deal or daily deal.
The application informs you of all the deals available to the Standard Chartered customers which you could leverage via location-based coupons. As usual, the success of such a REWARD programme will depend on the number of partnerships the bank will manage to put in place and the level of attractiveness of the offers… stay tuned.
Create Your Own Private Community
As you would expect, the Breeze team didn’t forget to add a social networking capability: the app users can create their private tribe and make other users aware of their activity.
I’m curious to see how used will this feature be. Indeed, it is always challenging to urge people to use a new service and build another community when they are already actively engaged on other services like facebook, twitter or foursquare…
So you are not a Standard Chartered customer in Asia… How does your bank’s mobile banking application compare to Breeze or BreezeLiving?
More importantly, would you consider switching bank for such an engaging and intuitive mobile offering?