A study, “The Benefits of Innovative Information Technology in the Banking Industry,” was conducted by the Frankfurt School of Finance & Management, New York University’s Stern School of Business and Management, the University of Applied Sciences and Arts North-Western Switzerland, the Business Transformation Academy (Basel, Switzerland) and SAP SE. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device, SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively.
The study uncovered various trends in banking and also provided detailed insights into the technology areas considered as most important for the industry.
More than six out of 10 participants (65 percent) said mobile is the most important trend for the future, followed by in-memory computing (48 percent) and cloud (47 percent).
Until recent years, income variability and heavy transaction costs prevented many people in African countries from accessing formal banking services. Financial services provided through the mobile channel have emerged as a needed solution. The study found that four key mobile banking functionalities are key in African economies:
- Mobile phones can serve as a virtual bank card
- Mobile phones can be used to duplicate the functionalities of point of sale terminals
- Mobiles phones can be used as a substitute for automatic teller machines
- Mobile devices can be used as an Internet banking terminal
A senior executive from a large U.S. bank who was interviewed for the report noted that 25 percent of mobile phone users access financial services content on their phone, yielding a significant market opportunity for banks in mobile banking application development.
Mobile banking is following a similar usage curve to online banking, with China, India and the United Arab Emirates leading in adoption. In emerging markets, mobile devices provide access to financial services to previously under-banked populations.
Respondents also recognise the opportunity in Big Data and analytics in banking and placed a much greater emphasis on the overall comprehensiveness of information.