Smartphone: A Portable Bank in Your Pocket
Smartphones have become a necessity for our generation today. There is a lot of work you can do with using just your smartphone, such as order food, shop for daily stuff, make a video call, play games, watch movies, get directions and traffic updates, and so on. With cheaper internet connections (thanks to Jio), and affordable mobile handsets, the country is moving fast towards Prime Minister’s dream of Digital India.
With so much going on in the Indian digital world, many industries are trying their best to reach smartphone users. One industry that is getting highly benefited in the digitally-driven economy is Banking and Insurance. People don’t have to visit banks anymore to get the work done. No need to update your passbook manually, no need to visit the bank to get a new cheque book, no need to cary cash to make a transaction or tear up a cheque, no need to stand in a queue to deposit or withdraw money or to get other financial services. Everything is available on your smartphone nowadays.
Banks and insurance companies are leaving no stone unturned to reach their customers and the potential audience who are using smartphones by providing various mobile-friendly apps and services including:
1. Mobile Apps
There are various kinds of apps for smartphone users to make bill payments, money transfer, transactions and banking services simpler and instant for them. Here are popular types of apps that are in use today:
These apps are banks on the go and enable users to open Fixed Deposits, invest in mutual funds (lumpsum or SIP both), buy insurance, get an additional Credit Card, pay utility bills, transfer funds and do a lot more stuff by using just a smartphone. Here are some useful apps:
• BHIM: This app lets you transfer funds to any other bank or e-payment account. No need to register the payee in advance. You don’t even need to have the payee’s bank account number, his/ her mobile number is enough. Unlike other apps, users can authenticate the fund transfer using their fingerprints besides the PIN. The app also works without internet. The best thing about the app is that it gives users a direct link to call the respective bank in case of any issue. It has customer care numbers of all the banks.
• PhonePe: This UPI based payment app enables you to make payment using your UPI enabled bank account, credit/ debit cards, or PhonePe wallet. Users can withdraw their PhonePe wallet balance to their bank account for free in just a swipe. You can use PhonePe for paying utility bills, mobile recharge, money transfer to friends or family, request money, etc.
• Citibank: Launched by Citibank this app lets you make payments and transfers, pay your utility bills, recharge your mobile or DTH connection, and recharge your wallet. You can also perform banking activities using this app, including converting your Credit Card transactions into EMIs, avail for a loan on your Credit Card, make deposits, investments, and a lot more stuff. This is all-in-one banking app.
• HDFC Bank: This app helps you check your account balance, transfer funds, pay your bills and much more using your smartphone. HDFC is the only bank that has a Mobile Banking App in Hindi (only for Android phones).
• iMobile: This Mobile Banking App by ICICI Bank provides many banking services to its users, including bill pay reminders, manage Demat portfolio (through iDirect), see the status of deliverables from ICICI Bank (through iTrack), personalize Debit Card, tax payment, and buy general insurance or life insurance.
• SBI Anywhere Personal: This mobile Banking application for smartphone customers of SBI – instant fund transfer, e-deposits, check your account information, recharge, bill payment, debit card services, etc.
B. E-Wallets Apps
E-wallet apps enable smartphone users to pay utility bills, make payment to shopkeepers (online and offline), recharge mobile, DTH, and even metro cards, send money to friends and family members, and so on. Here are some interesting e-wallet apps that are available nowadays:
• Paytm: With Paytm you can transfer money (Paytm wallet to Paytm wallet, Paytm wallet to Paytm bank account or Paytm wallet to other bank account), make payments to merchants, recharge prepaid mobile/DTH /metro card, pay utility bills, book movie/ flight/ bus/ train tickets, make hotel booking, and do so many other things. This app is very popular among people nowadays, thanks to demonetization of November 2016. There are other apps too that work on similar theme such as MobiKwik, FreeCharge, etc.
• ICICI Pockets: Using this e-wallet smartphone user can pay utility bills instantly, recharge prepaid mobile, make quick transactions, and transfer money to email ids and WhatsApp contacts easily.
• HDFC PayZapp: It is among the topmost online e-wallets in India. It gives users the ability to easily compare flight tickets and hotel bookings. Users can also buy music or pay their utility bills with this app. Simply connect your debit or credit card once with the app and forget worrying about making payments.
• LIME: This app of AXIS Bank, was India’s first mobile app to integrate wallets, payments, shopping, and banking. Users can analyze what they spend and round up all their change and invest them in a deposit. The app also has a unique shared wallet tool.
As per the RBI guidelines, the maximum amount a user can keep in his/ her e-wallet is 20,000 per month. The upper limit for merchants is 50,000. However, banks have the liberty to set their own limits for per-transaction based on their risk perception and with the approval of boards. This freedom, gives banking apps an edge over e-wallets.
C. Non-financial Apps
Keeping up with the digital payment trend, many non-financial apps have also developed some apps. Here are a few of them:
• Airtel Money: Created by Airtel, this app lets users to deposit and keep money, buy internet data plans, withdraw money, send or receive money across network, make goods and services and utility bill payments, perform mobile banking transactions, and manage your mobile wallet account. The app has a maximum transaction limit of 50,000 per day (including 25,000/month maximum sending limit).
• Apple Pay: Install Apple Pay wallet in your iOS 8 or later version iPhone, and add Debit/ Credit Card to your wallet. Within a few minutes the cards will get verified and will be immediately available for making in stores and within apps purchases with just one click. This amazing app uses NFC technology to make your offline shopping experience wonderful. For example, if you enter a retail store, and approach an Apple Pay compatible point-of-sale system, the screen of your iPhone will get lighten up and your Apple Pay wallet will open up automatically. You can then just tap on a Credit Card (you can choose any from all the cards stored in your wallet or set one default card) to pay for your shopping. This app is currently unavailable in India.
• Samsung Pay: The process of installation and usage of this app is similar to Apple Pay. Users can add upto 10 cards to Samsung Pay. If you’re using a Credit Card, you can make payment with a fingerprint verification. However, if you’re using a debit card, you may still be required to enter the PIN of your card on the terminal. The main difference between Apply Pay and Samsung Pay is that the later works at almost every store that accept Credit/ Debit Cards, and not just at tap-to-pay based NFC terminals like Apple Pay. The limit of transaction per day is not mentioned in the product’s website as of now.
2. Availing Financial Services
There was a time when people used to stand in long queues in a bank’s branch to submit an application for a loan and then again wait for many days to get approval and funding. Today, with the availability of multiple online lending platforms like mymoneymantra, you can get access to all the leading banks and financial institutions, fill in the application form, submit documents, and get funds disbursed to your bank account within a few days just by using your smartphone.
Home loans, personal loans, business loans, Credit Cards, and every other financial service can be availed with just a single gadget – your smartphone!
3. Mobile-Responsive Sites
As people are browsing the internet on the go, almost every bank has created a mobile-responsive site for its audience to give them a wonderful user experience on mobile. Most e-commerce players have brought down the desktop versions of their site and only engage with their customers through mobiles.
4. Contactless Banking
With no employees, bank branches are also going automatic nowadays. They are using technology, including Skype based services, machine based transaction support (Through ATMs and Cash Vending and Deposit Machines) to provide instant services to their customers.
Ordering cheque books or passbooks, making transactions, paying bills, transferring money, checking the bank balance, opening deposit accounts, and so on – with everything available on just a few taps on your mobile, smartphones are not just a gadget to make calls anymore. They are a portable bank in your pocket on the go!
mymoneymantra is a financial services distributor having association of more than 60+ lending partners and over 28 years of experience in the finance sector. For any financial assistance, call us toll-free at 18001034004.
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