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BB&T enhances multichannel banking platform with iPad app

BB&T Corp. has launched a free iPad application to provide banking access to its on-the-go clients, complementing its SMS, mobile Web and smartphone application offerings.

Available for download in the iTunes App Store, the BB&T iPad application augments the financial services company’s SMS banking platform, mobile-optimized Web site and applications for Apple’s iPhone and Research In Motion’s BlackBerry. The iPad application is being promoted via banners on BB&T’s Web site and within its other applications.

“BB&T started investing in developing in the mobile space three years ago, and the iPad is the latest device that we have released support for,” said Patricia Kinney, Raleigh, NC-based mobile channel manager at BB&T. “BB&T has decided to invest and call out the mobile channel as a key channel for our clients.

“It is a very critical channel for us, but it doesn’t change who BB&T is, providing the perfect client experience,” she said. “The mobile channel provides a great way for us to connect with and stay committed to our clients, and this iPad app provides them with the convenience that they desire.

“The iPad is a very fast-moving device in terms of popularity, and we believe that there will be a lot of growth in the tablet space.”

BB&T Corp. is a financial services holding company. Based in Winston-Salem, N.C., it operates approximately 1,800 financial centers in 12 states and Washington, DC, offering consumer and commercial banking, securities brokerage, asset management, mortgage and insurance products and services.

Tablet banking on the rise
The BB&T iPad application lets clients access BB&T online banking to check their account balances, transfer funds, pay bills and sign up for paperless statements and account alerts.

Consumers can also use the application to open new accounts – apply for checking and savings accounts, home equity loans and other financial services.

Clients can use the application to add accounts to their shopping cart, get an instant decision and fund accounts online.

The application also lets users find BB&T bricks-and-mortar locations – customers can locate the nearest BB&T financial center or ATM using Global Positioning System technology.

Application users can also access an online library of financial education information and interactive calculators.

BB&T claims that it guards clients’ accounts with 128-bit encryption technology, multiple firewalls to shield the network and logon security measures with automatic inactivity logoff.

“Most banks just took their iPhone app and ported it to the iPad, but we took advantage of the unique characteristics that the iPad has to offer,” said Sumit Deshpande, Raleigh, NC-based online channel group manager, mobile and messaging services at BB&T. “It is really about providing a means for our clients to access BB&T services wherever and whenever they want.

“With the iPad app we leverage what we have in the online world, enabling financial management, making transfers and bill payments and the ability to open new accounts using existing online process, so there is a sales aspect as well,” he said. “We make it easy to open up new accounts with us via the iPad.

“Another key piece is financial education, providing access to materials like mortgage calculators, finding the nearest branch and ATM and a self-service platform for client to manage their finances.”

Final Take
Dan Butcher, associate editor, Mobile Commerce Daily