Mumbai: With the Reserve Bank permitting transfer of funds across various mobile-phone service providers, atleast three leading public sector banks are readying to roll-out full-banking services via M-Banking in the coming few weeks.
India’s leading lender, State Bank, said it is in the final stages of its M-Banking roll-out and has scheduled its launch in late July while Bank of India and Union Bank of India plan to introduce their services by end-June.
State Bank, which had earlier planned the launch for June, had to reschedule it in order to get a suitable aggregator, a senior SBI offical told PTI.
“We expect to launch our services in the second-half of July. We are on the lookout for an SMS-aggregator and would shortlist a player soon. This would be primarily for SMS-based transactions,” the official said.
SBI, which has partnered with Mumbai-based technology services provider, Spanco Systems, is understood to have plans to tie-up with a number of service providers to take the service to the far-corners of the country, the official said.
SBI plan to offer end-to-end banking services to its customers, such as account-to-account money transfer, utility bill payments and account-related queries, amongst others.
Bank of India has also finalised its M-Banking plans and is likely to announce the launch by June-end. The bank has tied-up with local technology services provider, BillDesk, an official said.
“With the roll out of our M-Banking, nearly 1.75 crore customers out of our total customer-base of 2.5-crore will benefit from the service in the first-phase. The services will include utility bill payments,“ BoI’s General Manager, P A Kalyanasundar said.
Meanwhile, UBI is also understood to have M-Banking plans and it is likely to launch the service very soon, its Executive Director T Y Prabhu said.
The bank is already offering basic banking facilities such as availing account informations, mini statements on the last few transactions and making cheque book requests by sending SMS, Prabhu said.
Recently, the RBI had said in its draft guidelines that even those with the most basic mobile phones may be able to pay for transactions through their mobile.
The apex bank had okayed mobile payments for small transactions upto Rs 1,500 using the SMS facility.
Recognising a huge potential in the M-Banking space, many leading banks in the private and foreign banking segments, have already rolled out M-Banking services to their retail customers.
Early this year, India’s largest private bank, ICICI Bank, had launched iMobile —a product that enabled its customers to perform banking transactions including transferring funds to other bank’s accounts.