North American SnAppshot: Advisors

An Overview of Mobile Apps
by Bill Fearnley, Jr, April 17, 2012
Industry Trends
North America

Abstract

Smartphone and tablet growth remain strong, and Celent believes double-digit growth of smart mobile devices will continue. Financial advisors want to use smart devices to better serve their clients and to help them with client and prospect presentations. Many advisors are bringing their own devices to work and are looking for innovative apps to help them be more productive.

In a new report, North American SnAppshot: Advisors, Celent explores some of the technology and business issues wealth management firms are facing as they develop mobile applications for their advisors. Celent estimates that 664 million smartphones and 115 million tablets will be sold in 2012, and smart device growth is fueling advisor interest in using these devices to help manage their practices.

There are multiple demand drivers for advisor apps, and this report examines factors and trends such as Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and app branding that are driving demand from advisors for advisor apps.

“Advisors want access to market and client information on smartphone devices, and some of the leading wealth management firms have released apps for their advisors,” says Bill Fearnley, Jr., Celent Senior Analyst and author of the report. “Most advisors don’t have the financial and technical resources to develop their own apps so they’re asking their partners to provide them with the tools. Advisors also want to brand or cobrand these apps with their logos to show clients that they’re using the latest technology.”

In this report, Celent discusses some of the technology options available and offers recommendations for firms looking to develop apps for their advisors.

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 part of Marsh & McLennan Companies [NYSE: MMC].

Media Contacts

North America (Boston)
Erica Ferguson
eferguson@celent.com
Tel.: +1 617 262 8225

Europe (London)
Chris Williams
cwilliams@celent.com
Tel: +44 (0)208 870 7875

Asia (Tokyo)
Yumi Nagaoka
ynagaoka@celent.com
Tel.: +81.3.3500.3023

Table of Contents

Executive Summary

3

 

App Types and OS Platform Considerations

4

 

Key Findings

4

Introduction

5

Technology Overview

7

 

Multiple Catalysts Driving App Demand

8

 

Technology Considerations

10

Advisor Apps: Seven Key Features

11

 

Quotes / Market Data

12

 

Trading

12

 

Alerts

12

 

Research

12

 

Advisor-Branded Apps

13

l

CRM System Access and Context Integration

13

Advisor Apps from Leading Firms

14

 

Fidelity WealthCentral

15

 

TD Ameritrade Veo Mobile

16

 

Vanguard Advisors

17

 

Schwab Advisor Mobile

17

 

UBS FA Mobile

17

 

Apps Are Available on Multiple Platforms

18

Conclusions and Recommendations

19

Leveraging Celent’s Expertise

21

 

Support for Financial Institutions

21

 

Support for Vendors

21

Related Celent Research

22

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