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First Hawaiian Bank taps into mobile

Financial institution First Hawaiian Bank is rolling out a mobile set of tools aimed at capturing as many mobile users as possible.

First Hawaiian Bank is using an SMS program, a mobile Web browser and applications for iPhone, Android and BlackBerry devices. The financial institution is working with mobile solution mFoundry on this initiative.

“Using multiple channels is like throwing a bigger net when you go fishing – you’ll get more fish,” said Drew Sievers, CEO of mFoundry, Larkspur, CA.

“Not everyone has an app-enabled phone or a data plan, so offering a more flexible approach with mobile Web and text ensures that you can serve the broadest customer base possible,” he said.

First Hawaiian Bank claims to be Hawaii’s oldest and largest bank that provides personal, private and business services for clients.

Mobile catch-all
First Hawaiian Bank began rolling out its mobile efforts in September and are now available to the bank’s consumer and business clients who use online banking.

Clients can access the mobile browser at to view account balances and activity for up to 90 days in the past.

Users can also schedule and manage bill payments.

Consumers can also download free First Hawaiian Bank apps from Apple’s App Store, Google’s Android Market and BlackBerry’s App World.

Using GPS inside the app, users can find nearby ATMs and branches via the mobile Web site.

Users can also manage their money by opting-in to an SMS program that tracks their accounts.

To sign up for the text program, consumers can log-in to the mobile browser and register their account.

Users can then text a unique activation number to the short code 69403.

Bank on mobile
Mobile banking has gained traction in 2011 and is expected to generate more attention in 2012 from both big and small financial institutions.

Additionally, banks are becoming more sophisticated with the services they offer and are including multiple channels in their mobile strategies.

According to a recent study, almost 13 million mobile consumers use a mobile banking app (see story).

“2011 saw incredible growth in mobile banking adoption by consumers and financial institutions alike, and it was also the year of mobile deposit,” Mr. Sievers said.

“I think 2012 will be the year you start to see more emerging payment solutions like peer-to-peer money movement and contactless payments at the point of sale,” he said.

“I believe that 2012 will be a transitional year for mobile banking, providing a nice foundation for payments growth in 2013.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York