Business Day

Absa joins peers in launching banking app

- Contributi­ng Writer

NICK HEDLEY ABSA Bank is the last of SA’s four major banks to launch a banking app for mobile devices — it announced the launch officially yesterday.

Adrian Vermooten, head of digital channels and payments at Absa Retail Bank, said the developmen­t of the app “was a strategic and purpose journey … in the past two years it would have been easy to do a knee-jerk reaction to the customer’s demand for an app”.

The app is available for Android and Apple devices. Absa plans to release a BlackBerry version within eight weeks.

Mr Vermooten said the app was designed for usability and easy navigation, and was not meant to replace internet banking. It was designed “for that five-minute down time that you have” as it allowed quick payments and transactio­ns.

The app allows multiple users in one household to link into a single device and also allows one user to connect their profile to multiple devices. Users can also view a breakdown of their daily spending and the app shows the net inflow or outflow of cash from an account.

The app combines smart device features — such as GPS location, which allows customers to search for the closest branch or ATM — while utilising the device’s contacts to make airtime or cash transfers to beneficiar­ies and contacts a quicker process.

The app was built on existing Barclays and Absa infrastruc­ture and was designed specifical­ly for SA. It would see a constant cycle of upgrades every eight weeks, which was “mapped out now for probably the next 18 months”.

The first upgrades would include BlackBerry devices and the use of images linked to contacts and beneficiar­ies.

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