By Claire West

Banking by smartphone and tablet has become the leading way customers manage their finances, as mobile banking overtakes branches and the internet as the most popular way to bank.

New research from CACI for the BBA shows that customers will use mobile devices to check their current accounts 895 million times in 2015, more than the 427 million branch interactions. By 2020 they are forecasting that customers will use their mobile to manage their current account 2.3 billion times — more than internet, branch and telephone banking put together.

These findings are published alongside the second edition of the Way We Bank Now, a joint report by the BBA and EY, which reveals that UK customers have downloaded banking apps on 22.9 million occasions by the end of March this year — a rise of 8.2 million in just one year.

Customers moved £2.9 billion a week using banking apps in 2015 — up from £2 billion in 2014.

The Way We Bank Now report also reveals that by March of this year there were:

9.6 million — log-ins to internet banking a day — a 10% increase on a year before
1.3 million — text message alerts sent by banks to their customers each day
43% — decline in telephone instructions by customers to their bank between 2008 and 2013
6% — decline in branch transactions across all banks in 2014
Anthony Browne, Chief Executive of the BBA, said:

“Technology is changing our lives and banking is no different — it is now easier than ever for us to check our balances, pay our friends and manage our money. The rapid take up of apps and mobile banking appears to be a real game changer for the British public.

“Our report shows that there is much to look forward to. Biometric security features will allow us to get hold of our money faster and without going through the rigmarole of passwords and PIN codes. The possibilities of using data analytics to give customers greater insight into how they spend their money and the best offers, services or products is very exciting too.

”It is vital that the government invests more in 4G and high-speed broadband to ensure that as many people as possible can be included in the revolution that is sweeping through banking.”

David Ebstein, Head of Digital for Financial Services at EY, comments:

“The British public is voting with its thumbs. Being mobile-enabled is a must, not a maybe, and banks that don’t engage properly with mobile channels risk losing relevance in customer’s lives. The next frontier of innovation will be delivering an exceptional customer experience through mobile, across products and services, and going beyond banking.

“The mass migration to mobile banking is an opportunity for banks to better engage with customers and regain trust customer by customer. Competition is intensifying, and successfully joining the dots between mobile, internet and branch banking could make the difference between winning and losing customers.”