Top 5 Problems with Mobile Banking Apps

Technology advancements always go through ebbs and flows. There are many tremendous developments with hopes of becoming the norm, but sometimes the technology does not work as advertised. How about mobile banking apps?


Shouldn’t everyone be turning to online banking due to the convenience of 24/7/365 access? There have been some serious problems with cell phone payment apps that have scared some consumers away. Here are the top 5 problems with mobile banking apps.

Mobile Banking Apps Sound Great But …

The World Wide Web and financial industry have made great strides over the last decade, but have kind of gotten stuck in no-man’s land. Financial institutions want more people to try mobile banking apps, but the primary problems have not been resolved. Without customers, banking firms has no incentive to invest in the research & development needed to fix the problems.

  1. Questionable Security

Security is the #1 concern for most online bankers. In fact, one expert estimates that 90% of all mobile banking apps have security issues. Ariel Sanchez of IO Active Labs tested out 40 of the top 60 banking apps on his iPhone and found that nine out of ten failed. The apps could not even protect against common hacker scams, like “phishing.” That is a dire finding.

Solution: Bankers need to hire ex-hackers to develop their apps.

  1. Dropped Calls, Crashes & Bad Connections

Have you ever had a dropped call or bad Internet connection? Imagine if you were right in the middle of a financial transaction. Weather, traffic and who-knows-what can interrupt your online banking transfer. Bill Shipley of Accenture Mobility Services admits that crashes for most mobile banking sites is about 5%.

Solution: More investment to improve up-time rates for mobile banking websites.

  1. Won’t Read Paper Deposits

When Microsoft upgrades its Windows, it needs to have backwards compatibility with older versions. This is a standard technological rule. Unfortunately, banking mobile apps cannot even read a paper check or physical signature. The financial sector is stuck – it promises to go paperless when most people still use paper for financial transactions.

Solution: Add a scanner to mobile devices.

  1. Bankers Don’t Understand Apps

Most bankers are traditionally conservative. Most app developers are fairly independent and liberal. Many financial institutions do not mesh well with the cell phone application development culture. Combining the cultures has been very difficult. Some programming languages are open source; banks require confidentiality.

Solution: Banks must create their own group of industry programmers.

  1. Very Little Standardization

What platform should you develop your banking app on – Blackberry, Apple or Google Android? The investment into mobile banking applications is very expensive with questionable returns. One expert claims Android payment apps are risky. Banks have a tough time forcing their rules upon a world with different languages, technologies and laws. The global village is becoming more parochial.

Solution: International organization to establish uniform banking mobile app rules.

On the Edge of Something Big

Technology goes through stops and starts. Even with the many problems with mobile banking apps, consumers are still gravitating to online banking. Financial institutions might need to do what they did with credit cards: reimburse people for any fraud.

Mobile banking is stuck in “no-man’s land.” It needs to improve the technology, but executives must see online banking as truly profitable. We must remember that “Too Big to Fail Banks” also have many other problems to deal with. The future for mobile banking apps looks bright once the wrinkles have been ironed out.

Jason Kane is a professional blogger who focuses on personal finance and other money matters. He currently writes for, a leading supplier of personal and business checks.