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Surge in cellphone banking usage

30 May 2006 ABSA

Absa reports that the number of people using cellphone banking has grown by 140% since it launched free cellphone banking to the market in October 2005.

During the course of April 2006 Absas cellphone banking customers performed around 200 000 financial transactions estimated at R210 million.

The most popular financial transactions are prepaid top-ups for cellphone airtime, inter-account transfers and payments.

What this tells us is that cellphone banking is being used as a convenient cousin to Internet Banking, says Christo Vrey, Absa General Manager: Digital Channels.

When people dont have access to electricity or are just not close to an Internet connection, and would rather not use a public facility such as an Internet caf because of the risks, they are turning to cellphone banking.

What has also impacted on customer growth is Absas internet based cellphone banking introduced to the market in March 2006 as an alternative to the traditional sms-based cellphone banking.

Internet based cellphone banking is particularly easy for those who are used to Internet banking because the layout is very similar to Internet banking, says Vrey.

Other advantages include the following:

There are no delays. You dont need to send SMSs or punch in codes to get balances, make payments and transfers or buy prepaid airtime. You can scroll easily to your account information which appears on one screen. You can select beneficiaries, transaction histories and request proof of payments just as you would on the internet

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