TSB launches mobile phone banking service app; ASB gets a property guide iPhone app, and BNZ claims NZ 1st mobile phone security innovation

TSB launches mobile phone banking service app; ASB gets a property guide iPhone app, and BNZ claims NZ 1st mobile phone security innovation

By Gareth Vaughan

TSB Bank's technology services manager Marie Collins says the bank's customers could soon be applying for home loans via video conference.

With TSB launching a new mobile phone service, [my]bank, its first mobile phone banking service that's an application (app) in its own right, Collins told interest.co.nz she didn't ultimately image customers doing all their banking via mobile phones because "complex" transactions like mortgages and first home buying required a face to face meeting between bankers and their customers.

Now whether that's actually in a branch, or you use video technology, I think there'll always be a need to have that face to face (meeting)," Collins said.

"Video technology is something we are also looking into because I think that is probably a bridge between doing everything on your mobile and visiting a branch."

TSB was looking into using the likes of Skype.

"Yes, why not. That's where I think the future is going to go. It's not always going to be convenient for people to visit branches and I think making use of technologies like that is what banks need to be investigating."

TSB's launch of [my] bank means it joins ANZ, ASB, BNZ and Westpac with an app for smart phones, leaving just Kiwibank of the major retail banks without one. The state owned bank's spokesman Bruce Thompson says, however, it's expecting approval from Apple to launch an app within a week or so. 

ASB, meanwhile, now has a Property Guide iPhone app which it says is "like your own personal real estate agent, property analyst and home lender – pocket sized and free from the Apple store."

"Along with property search, our toolkit will help you make the right choice with practical information like the price, photos, detailed property information provided by Q.V. and a home loan repayment calculator. We’ll also help you compare surrounding house prices plotted on our innovative augmented reality map. With the ASB Property Guide, we’ll help you get started on your home buying journey," ASB says.

And for its part, BNZ claims a New Zealand first security innovation incorporating "secure two factor authentication" into the actual mobile application, thus removing any need to manually enter login details while using mobile banking.

“Our NetGuard system ensures online banking is secure, but the process of having to enter an access number, a password and a separate set of values from a NetGuard card doesn’t gel with the whole mobile experience," BNZ director of retail Andy Symons says. “What Mobile NetGuard does is turn the phone itself into the NetGuard device meaning customers need only enter their password to log in via our iPhone and Android apps. In the background, NetGuard is still there generating a unique security code for each and every session without impacting the user experience."

Symons says in nine months about NZ$250,000,000 worth of transactions have been made using BNZ’s mobile services.

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I am very interested in the claim from ASB
"Along with property search, our toolkit will help you make the right choice with practical information like the price, photos, detailed property information provided by Q.V. and a home loan repayment calculator"
 
The app shows listings for properties that have already been sold - this is due to the source of data from QV who do not run a website and collect data on listings from newspapers and magazines. These listings are only removed from the database when the property title change occurs - usually 30 - 60 day after unconditonal sale. An example of this was a search using the ASB app over the weekend which showed 108 properties for sale around Ponsonby / Grey Lynn, the same area on the Realestate.co.nz app showed just 28 listings - all of which are on the market, complete with open home times etc.
 
More significantly though is that the listings on the ASB app show no details of the listing agent or the listed date or auction date - also all listings have just 1 photo taken from the street or no photo at all - all of these images are QV images, not agent images.