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Younger Generation Might Try Mobile Banking

[May 5, 2008.]


A new poll by the Opinion Research Corporation suggests that younger Americans are the demographic most likely to try using mobile devices such as PDAs and cell phones to manage their bank accounts. Older Americans, on the other hand, seem resistant to the idea of managing their finances on the go, away from their homes or offices.

The Opinion Research Corporation contacted 1,424 American adults by phone during the days of Jan 24-28, 2008. The individuals contacted during the course of the poll needed to be in possession of both a cell phone and a bank account.

Mobile devices are rarely used to manage banking transactions in America. The results of a different survey, administered by a retail banking consulting group at IBM, show that 89% of today's cell phone owners do not use their phones for bank business - despite the fact that most banks offer the option .

However, the Opinion Research survey shows that if any group of consumers is going to start using mobile devices to conduct bank business, it is the 18-24 demographic. Fully 21% of the survey respondents from this age range reported using their cell phones to do bank business. This contrasts sharply with the figure representing the use of cell phones for banking among the rest of America's population: a mere 10%.

The Aite Group, a research firm, has looked at the total number of mobile bank customers. That number has gone up from almost nothing during the last part of 2006, to 1.7 at the end of 2007. The group asserts that these numbers will continue to grow a a comparable rate during the next few years. By 2010, says the Aite Group, there will be 35 million people in America who regularly use mobile devices for their banking needs.

According to the trends demonstrated in the Opinion Research Corporation's survey, the majority of that 35 million will be members of “Generation Y.”


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