Mobile Banking Services in Western Europe

May 7, 2008


Paris, France 7 May 2008

Adoption of mobile banking should increase rapidly in major European markets. Thanks to improvements in mobile technology and high mobile phone adoption rates in Europe, banks are able to offer a wide range of added value mobile banking services.

The mobile phone delivery channel represents a challenge for the European banking industry, enabling institutions to differentiate themselves from competitors, reduce costs, and develop customer loyalty. The adoption of mobile banking should increase rapidly in major European markets over the next few years, from an average of 6% today to 25% of the Spanish, French, Italian, and British markets by 2010.

In a new report, , Celent analyses the current state and potential success of mobile banking services in major European markets by providing answers to the following questions:

  • What exactly is mobile banking and why does it matter today?
  • What are the major adoption drivers and barriers in Western Europe?
  • How are European banks becoming mobile and what strategies have they implemented?

Significant barriers remain: a general lack of awareness, technological issues, customers’ perception of security, and more significantly, the cost of mobile Internet are major hurdles to mass market mobile banking adoption. If mobile Internet usage increases, we can expect a larger number of users to interact with their banks through their mobile phones as they currently do online.

European banks have anticipated the dissolution of adoption barriers and have already launched various mobile banking services using mainly the WAP and SMS technologies. Only a few downloadable applications have been successful, mainly in the UK and in Germany. French and Spanish banks are currently offering a broader range of mobile services, followed by Italian banks. However, there are still many disparities between countries regarding the number and type of mobile banking services offered. At the European level, information and SMS services are the most common.

"The adoption of mobile banking by the mass market depends not only on the suppression of major barriers, but also on marketing and promotion from banks. Once customers recognize the benefits, the convenience, and the ease of usage, they will adopt mobile banking as they adopted online services," says Perrine Fiorina, an analyst with Celent’s banking group and author of the report.

The 39-page report contains 14 figures and 8 tables. A table of contents is available online.

Members of Celent's Retail Banking research service can download the report electronically by clicking on the icon to the left.  Non-members should contact for more information.  

Celent is a research and advisory firm dedicated to helping financial institutions formulate comprehensive business and technology strategies. Celent publishes reports identifying trends and best practices in financial services technology and conducts consulting engagements for financial institutions looking to use technology to enhance existing business processes or launch new business strategies. With a team of internationally based analysts, Celent is uniquely positioned to offer strategic advice and market insights on a global basis. Celent is a member of the Oliver Wyman Group, which is a wholly-owned operating unit of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

Media Contacts

North America
Michele Pace
Tel: +1 212 345 1366

Europe (London)
Chris Williams
Tel: +44 (0)782 448 3336

Asia (Tokyo)
Yumi Nagaoka
Tel.: +81 3 3500 3023

Table of Contents

Paris, France 7 May 2008


Executive Summary 3
Introduction 4
  Why Does Mobile Banking Matter? 4
  Mobile Banking Services Definition 6
  Mobile Banking Technologies 8
Mobile Banking Adoption Drivers and Barriers 12
  European Consumers' Needs: Multichannel Expectations 12
  Mobile Phone Adoption and Usage 14
  Major Barriers to Mobile Banking Adoption 17
European Banks Are Becoming Mobile 21
  European Retail Banking: A Heterogeneous Market 22
  Various Mobile Banking Strategies 22
  Successful Downloadable Banking Application Providers 24
  Differences Among Countries in Availability of Mobile Banking Services 33
Conclusions 36


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