Filipinos keen on banking with smartphones

Image courtesy of Union Bank of the Philippines

Consumers in the Philippines are more comfortable in opening bank accounts with smartphones than those in the United States and in the United Kingdom.

According to the FICO Consumer Digital Banking Survey, 26% of Filipinos prefer to open a bank account on their phone compared to 18% in the US and 25 percent in the UK.

Also, 76% of Filipino consumers said they would open a financial account online.

The survey was conducted online and covered 5,000 adults who live in Brazil, Canada, Germany, Malaysia, Mexico, Philippines, Sweden, UK and the US.

“Filipino consumers are digital natives,” said Subhashish Bose, FICO’s lead for fraud, security and compliance in Asia Pacific. “Around 40% of Filipinos have a smartphone and according to a recent study they rank in the top 10 mobile internet users globally, spending an average of 4.58 hours a day on their phones.”

The study showed that digital account opening is rapidly becoming the norm in the Philippines, with 76% of consumers saying they would open some kind of financial account online.

Of those that would open a financial account online, 40% would consider doing so for an everyday transaction account, 38% for a credit card and 33% for a personal loan.

Bucking expectations, it was older consumers in the Philippines who were more likely to be leading the digital push with the youngest Filipinos being the laggards. Among those older than 55, 46% said they would open a bank account online compared to 28% of 18-24-year-olds.

The survey found that a large percentage of Filipinos had an expectation that they should be able to complete all aspects of account opening online or on their phone.

Out of the regular identity checks needed to open an account, 67% of Filipinos thought they should be able to prove their identity by scanning documents or providing a selfie, 47% expected to prove where they live without going offline and 45% said they should be able to set up a biometric such as a fingerprint scan at account opening.

If all actions required to complete an account opening cannot be accomplished in-session, only 41% of respondents said they would carry out the necessary offline actions as soon as possible.