Last night a number of us met at ShaShuka on Fraser Street. It was good to see everyone after a busy summer. John had his iPhone with him so the questions began. This is an amazing piece of technology. It is a computer with a finder, terminal, et al. The screen is crystal clear and John was moving through programs and lists in an amazingly fast fashion. This device will change the way we view cell phones, the way iPods changed the way we view music and digital imagery. Mobile banking with this device is going to put people’s financial transactions in front of them with complete ease. The question is what will banking look like when access to your account can be done from anywhere? How did the iPod change us when we could listen to our record collection from anywhere?
The consumer will no longer be a passive viewer but an active participant in realizing their spending habits. Think of it this way. You’ve set up your monthly budget, your using Wesabe to tag and assimilate your financing spending, you are in the grocery store and pay for the goods with your Debit card, the iPhone alerts you “Congratulations you are still within budget for food purchases this month….” or on the other side “Not good news – you are exceeding your entertainment budget by ….” Maybe we can become a nation of savers (more than 2.5% of our income) with a little discipline and technology.