Just yesterday I was scrolling through the app store to see if there was anything interesting out, and I came across an app I haven’t seen in the top 25 before. The app I am speaking about is Royal Bank of Canada’s (RBC) Mobile app. RBC released the app on December 17th; the Blackberry RBC Mobile Banking app was released on December 20th.
The RBC Mobile Banking app is definitely something that has been long overdue for many reasons, particularly because other larger Canadian banks have brought out their mobile banking apps quite early in the year. These mobile banking apps have really revolutionized how people can bank. They no longer have to go onto the computer to check account or call their bank to find out information.
What sets RBC apart from its competition is the fact that it has taken mobile banking to a whole new level. RBC has become the first Canadian bank to launch a fully integrated mobile banking application for select Smartphones, particularly, the Blackberry.
How did RBC go about in creating the application?
Rather than create an application, and see what the public thinks of it; RBC listened to their clients and created an application that they would want to use. By focusing on what clients wanted to do most, they created an application that would leverage the capabilities of the smartphone and mobile banking.
In an RBC poll of what mobile device users would like to be able to do, it was determined that Canadians want the ability to check account balances, pay bills, view transaction history and transfer between accounts.
RBC has in fact offered mobile banking services to clients since 2008, and with the introduction of their new integrated apps that leverage the capabilities of the device, clients can experience a new level of mobile banking.
What can I do with the RBC Mobile Banking app?
With the RBC Mobile Banking app, clients can access a full range of service, which include the ability to:
- View account balances for all personal and business accounts.
- View account details for accounts such as credit lines, credit cards, mortgages and loans.
- Pay bills for all existing online banking payees.
- View transaction history and payment history.
- Transfer funds between all RBC accounts.
- Send internet email money transfers.
- Send third-party payments.
- Locate RBC branches and ATMs.
What makes this application unique for the Blackberry?
As many people may have noticed with Blackberry mobile banking apps, they have either been a mobile website or an application that mimics the iPhone application, without taking any advantage of the capabilities of what a Blackberry offers.
With that said, the Blackberry RBC Mobile Banking app offers several features that sets it apart from the competition.
RBC has taken advantage of Blackberry’s context sensitive menu and integrated it completely into the application. The screen is simple, and reinforces the device’s menu and keys, creating an application that is easy to use.
Many Blackberry users can agree that Blackberry Maps can be difficult to use at times, however they have also gotten accustomed to any problems they find and make do with it. RBC has in turn taken advantage of what was given to them and optimized it to make it work for clients within the application.
What I love about the RBC Mobile Banking app for the Blackberry is that you do not have to sign out of your account to view locations of RBC branches’ or ATMs on the map and get directions.
James McGuire, VP, Digital Strategy & Experience, RBC said that they have taken what is available on the Blackberry, and created an application that works in unison with it. Allowing the user to get the most from their Blackberry, and from the RBC Mobile Banking app.
Whenever I have used Blackberry applications, or even the Map application, I find that it lags quite a bit. The greatest part about the RBC Mobile Banking app is that the lag is virtually nonexistent. You have to keep in mind that the quality of your signal and provider is a factor, but for the most part, from what I have seen there is no lag at all.
What features will come in the future?
RBC has a list of what is to come to their RBC Mobile Banking app; it includes form building on current payments down to the transfer function.
What they had in mind while creating this application was to create a solid core application that they can build on. With the right foundation, they can build more onto the application, making an even better experience for the user. More features are expected to be added within the next 6 – 12 months.
What I found interesting was the after a few days of being released, the RBC Mobile Banking app is already in the 5th spot of the top 25 free downloaded apps in the app store. and in the Finance category, it is #1.
I was invited to partake in an online demonstration of RBC Mobile Banking app and got to see first hand how well the Blackberry app works. After first few minutes of listening to James talk about the application and development, I was convinced that RBC had taken a lot of time to create an application that not only suits their clients needs but make use of the technology that they are using to access the application. I am sure that RBC clients are grateful for the creation of the RBC Mobile Banking app, and I for one cannot wait to see what else RBC introduces in the future.
If you are interested in getting the RBC Mobile Banking app for your iPhone, click here.
For Blackberry users who wish to do the same, you can download the application at http://www.rbcroyalbank.com/mobileapps/. The application will be available on the Blackberry app store from January 7th, 2011.