Sunday, October 28, 2007

Will People Use It?

It is such an amazing situation for me - this constant question: "will people use it?". It is like self-fulfilling prophecies. It seems to me that that is what analysts do. They take positions and then their positions make things happen... and we easily forget when they were wrong.

Take Y2K. Even weeks before 31 December, the world was only 63% ready. Yet nothing happened, except that the world spent billions to be "ready".
So why can't analysts get themselves to say that if banks don't deploy mobile banking they will be out of business in ten years.... like they did with Internet banking? Maybe it is because there is nothing sexy about stating the obvious. Lets just take one case study in South Africa. A bank called First National Bank (FNB), launched mobile banking in little more than two years ago. This is some of their results:
  • Have more mobile banking customers than Internet banking customers within two years. It took them more than fifteen years to get to the same numbers with the Internet
  • The monetary value running through their mobile banking deployment have risen to a point where it is conceivable to outstrip credit card purchase volumes in the next year.
  • The service became profitable within eighteen months - now adding a sizable value to the bottom line.
Will people use it? Come-on, get real..

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