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Mobile banking in Europe: Who’s leading the way?

posted by N26 • Banking • December 2, 2015

Oh dear, just like we all learned in English class, there are a few nice words that the Anglo-Saxons like to borrow from the Germans. Zeitgeist, Wunderkind and Gesamtkunstwerk are a few of the examples we encounter in the startup world. But there are a couple of other examples that don’t suit us so well. The German Angst , for example.

This can be observed clearly when it comes to mobile banking. If we look at the user behavior of customers in Germany, we Germans are lagging behind, even at a European level. Citing a study by App Annie, the business weekly Wirtschaftswoche reported that the 10 most important banking apps in the UK were downloaded 3 times as often as comparable apps in Germany.


The breakthrough of mobile banking in the UK

The Telegraph reported that, since this year, mobile banking has become the most important channel for daily banking transactions among the Brits. In the UK, bank branches have long been overtaken by online banking, but for the first time, even more users are taking advantage of smartphones.

Transferring money via app plays a particularly important role in the UK: 2.9 billion pounds a week were transferred this year using banking apps.


Turkey and the Netherlands on the rise

Our neighbors from the Netherlands and Turkey are at the forefront of the mobile banking trend (one is sometimes ahead of the other, depending on the indicators used). In particular, Turkey’s open-mindedness towards FinTech topics that go beyond mobile banking, e.g. Bitcoin, surprised us at first (when we think of FinTech epicenters, we usually think of London, Berlin, the Netherlands or the innovative Baltic states). However, in a survey by ING DIBA, 45% of all Turkish respondents and only 9% of all Dutch respondents indicated that they considered Bitcoin to be the currency of the future. We’ll investigate and let you know where this enthusiasm is coming from!

But one thing every study confirms: when it comes to innovative banking solutions, Germans have some catching up to do.

Why is that? What do you think? What are the biggest challenges faced by innovators like NUMBER26 in getting the hesitant people of this country on board with the smart and mobile revolution?

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