From the trends that can be seen in banking functions, services, and trends today, is it possible to assess the future of banking in Singapore? It’s too early to say, although there are some innovations in banking that will definitely stay in the industry for quite a long time.
Perhaps one of the banking features that will receive more traction over the years is the highlight on convenient, something that is emphasized by services such as online banking and mobile banking. Online banking has been here for quite some time (and it didn’t time too long for people to embrace the innovation). Mobile banking, however, was a slow burn here and anywhere else in the world.
It’s easy to see why online banking easily became part of banking practice easily. Basically, this service allows bank account holders (may it be a current account or a saving account) to control and access their funds from the internet. Of course, you can’t withdraw money from your computer—but you can transfer funds, get your balance, and other similar functions. This makes current accounts all the more usable. Before, a current account holder has to go to his bank to complete a transaction. With online banking, everything is a simple click away.
Online banking isn’t all encompassing. Many banks do not offer online banking services for not so basic accounts such as fixed deposit accounts and children’s accounts. Still, it’s quite convenient. It has effectively changed how people bank.
Mobile banking took time to penetrate the habits of Singaporean bank account holders, but it nonetheless became a relevant addition to the number of services available to bankers today. As the term implies, mobile banking allows bank account holders to do some banking-related functions through their mobile phones (through text messaging or using the phone’s internet capacity).
The thing with mobile banking is that it’s a bit limited. For logistic and safety reasons, it does not and cannot offer the range of services online banking provides.
Just the same, the pattern is evident here: banks want bank account holders to make banking easy and convenient. Many experts do say that this innovation or focus on convenience isn’t entirely positive (for one, it has opened doors for bank fraud and identity thieves). But what this innovation actually addresses is how people work and function today. After all, people do rely on their mobile phones and the internet a lot. Why not use it to give consumers more access to their current accounts and saving accounts?
The future of cheques
In Singapore, rest assured, people and individuals are still using cheques. But in countries like America and the United Kingdom, cheques are used less and less. Consider, of course, that these countries used cheques intensively before, so the shift in the trend will affect them more than it will affect any other country. Still, generally speaking, cheques have been replaced by online banking and other means to provide funds from one bank account to another.