Mobile banking took a convenient step forward March 16, with J&B Software introducing a software-as-a-service mobile banking deposit offering for smartphones.
The solution supports all major platforms, including iPhone, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile, relying on the devices' cameras to snap an image of a check for depositing.
Ideal for organizations that deposit fewer than 20 checks per user per day, according to J&B, the offering "allows banks, brokerages, retailers, insurers, transportation companies, consumers and others to begin conveniently and securely deposit paper checks from mobile phones much more rapidly than an [on-premises] solution."
J&B said the offering "lowers implementation and overhead costs" and relies on Mitek Mobile ImageProve technology to assure that the transfers are secure and compliant with banking regulations. Complete audit trails are logged, though no data or images are stored on the smartphone, and all communication is 128-bit encrypted.
In a statement, J&B cited consulting company Mercatus as reporting that, were such a solution offered by a bank, 59 percent of mobile banking customers today would be likely to use it-a figure that seems to be supported by the success of similar offerings.
In August 2009, USAA, a private bank and insurer with a clientele of primarily highly mobile military personnel and their families, introduced an iPhone mobile banking application that it developed in-house. Within 24 hours of the application going live, USAA announced days later, approximately 1,500 checks had been deposited using the feature.
By January, USAA announced that 1.2 million of its 7.3 million members were using the mobile solution, and that members had since used it to route more than $300 million to bank accounts without ever stepping into a branch location. USAA additionally introduced a Mobile App for Android.
"With this expansion to Android-supported mobile phones, going to the bank to deposit a check soon may be as antiquated as black-and-white TVs," said Jeff Dennes, USAA's executive director of mobile technology.