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BBVA Compass makes apps a priority with Kindle Fire, Windows Phone banking

BBVA Compass has been active in the mobile space in the past year with apps available for iPhone, iPad, BlackBerry and Android devices. In particular, the company is going after the Kindle Fire because of its low price-point as a way to expand its tablet offerings.

“The Kindle Fire has been very successful – in fact, Amazon said a few months ago in a press release that the Kindle Fire was the No. 1-selling product at its online store and that it had captured 22 percent of tablet sales in the U.S.,” said Alex Carriles, executive vice president and director of mobile strategy and retail innovation at BBVA Compass, Birmingham, AL.

“That along with the fact that Amazon will be expanding the Kindle Fire line of tablets this holiday season makes it a very strong platform to deliver an application to our customers,” he said. “We also believe that its relatively low cost will lower the barriers of entry into the tablet market, making them much more affordable for our customers.”

BBVA Compass claims to be one of the 25 largest commercial banks in the United States with 710 branches and a large footprint in Alabama, Texas and Arizona.

Money management
BBVA Compass clients can download the apps from either the Amazon Appstore or the Windows Phone Store.

Users can pay and view bill statements from the app and check statements. Additionally, charts show consumers how their finances break down into specific accounts.

Consumers can transfer money between accounts and view images of paid checks. The app also lets consumers find nearby ATM branches.

Unlike other financial institutions, consumers can sign-up for a BBVA Compass account directly from the app, which eliminates the typical step of requiring users to register online before using an app.

For the Kindle Fire app, BBVA Compass optimized its Android app for the device. The company is also currently working on a tablet-specific Android app. 

The Kindle Fire app

App happy
BBVA Compass has made apps a staple of its mobile services available to consumers.

Most recently, the company upgraded its BlackBerry app to give users a wider palette of features (see story).

Additionally, the company tweaked its Android app over the summer to include features including graphs and charts (see story).

Apps give financial institutions a way to create a rich user experience that users repeatedly come back to.

“People enjoy having apps that are fully integrated with their chosen mobile platform,” Mr. Carriles said.

“Navigating the screens on a Windows mobile app is very different to navigating on an iPhone or an Android phone, for instance,” he said. “So it was important to us to preserve that user experience for our customers.”

“We are giving customers access whenever and wherever is most convenient for them, with a consistent customer experience across all channels.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York