Na n o - e c o n o m| c s

:
Mob||e opportun|t|es
for the f|nanc|a| sector
As|a Pac|f|c
Co n t e n t s
Na n o - e c o n o m| c s :
Mo b | | e o p p o r t u n | t | e s f o r t h e f | n a n c | a | s e c t o r
Execut|ve summary 3-4
Research methodo|ogy 5
Mob||e opportun|t|es 6-11
A case for change 12-13
Nano-econom|cs 14-15
Mu|t|-method ba|ance checks 16-17
Mob||e bank|ng secur|ty 18
Payment preferences 19-20
Techno-||terate 21-22
Conc|us|on 23-24
E x e c u t i v e s u mma r y
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
The Sybase 365 Mobile Banking Survey looks at user trends in approaching and utilising mobile services across
five Asia Pacific region: Australia, Singapore, India, China and Taiwan. The research finds that, though existing
mobile banking usage is at an ‘early adopter’ phase in its evolution, there is enthusiasm for future services.
Beyond mobile user perceptions, the report goes on to discuss some of the wider implications of mobile banking
on the financial sector.
In addition to specific mobile services, the survey discloses the passionate approach that some in Asia Pacific
share for keeping up to date with personal finances, highlighting the potential benefits of dynamic mobile
data services in this area. A summary of key findings from the survey is as follows:
Potential dividends
• The ability to access account balance enquiries via a mobile phone is the most compelling consumer banking
service for Asia Pacific mobile users, with over 80% expressing an interest in the service
• 27% of consumers interested in mobile banking would be willing to pay for the service
• 31% of users interested in mobile banking would be willing to switch banks if mobile banking services were
offered for free
Nano-economics
• On average, 27% of Asia Pacific mobile users know the exact amount of money in their bank balance at any
time, that figure rises to 43% in Taiwan and 42% in India
• Taiwan also has the highest proportion of users who have no idea of their bank balance (30%), showing a
highly polarised approach to personal finance
• Most users prefer to check their bank balance on an ad hoc basis, although Australians show a slightly more
methodical approach, checking every few days
Security
• Australians show the most confidence in mobile banking security, with 46% believing that the services
are secure
3
E x e c u t i v e s u mma r y
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
As might be expected, there are some considerable regional differences to take into account when
looking at the survey, which are discussed in the body of the report. A summary of country-specific
trends is described below:
Australia
Australian users are the most interested in the ability to deal with their finances while on the move,
and more than a quarter would consider switching banks for the offer of free mobile banking services.
Australians are the most methodical when it comes to checking their bank balance, which they do
every few days.
Singapore
Singapore has the highest proportion of users who want statements on request via their mobile phone.
They are least likely to switch banks for free mobile banking services and prefer to use the Internet or
ATM to check bank balances.
India
Indians are the very likely to know their exact bank balance and to know if their bank offers mobile
banking services. Users in India are also most likely to use their mobile phone to check their bank
balance, and are reasonably confident of its security. India has the highest proportion of respondents
that have used mobile banking services in the last three months.
China
Chinese users were most interested in receiving text notifications of banking transactions, and
are the most likely to consider switching banks for the offer of free services.
Taiwan
Taiwan shows the most polarised attitudes in the research, having the highest percentage of those
knowing their exact bank balance and the highest proportion of users who have ‘no idea’. Taiwanese
users express the least interest in dealing with their finances while on the move. However, a young
demographic and high mobile penetration means that Taiwan is considered to offer a good opportunity
for mobile banking services.
4
Re s e a r c h me t h o d o l o g y
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
The research surveyed 1,818 mobile users across 5 Asia Pacific regions, which were split as follows:
Australia (255 interviews), China (276), India (311), Singapore (692) and Taiwan (284). Interviews were
undertaken via an Internet-based questionnaire in May 2007. The research was commissioned by
Sybase 365 and carried out by BDM Intelligence, a leading custom market research firm in Asia.
As a result of the significant regional differences in mobile use across the Asia Pacific continent, averages
across the countries are referred to in commentary on the findings but must be considered in context some
considerably different regions. Though age ranges are consistent, mobile penetration rates and socio-economic
differences will influence comparative findings. With this in mind, all graphical data is presented on a per-region
basis for reference purposes.
.
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Given the scale and diversity of the Asia Pacific region, consumers are interested in accessing a wide range of
banking services via mobile phone (see Figure 1). The ability to access account balance enquiries via a mobile
phone is the most compelling consumer banking service, with over 80% of consumers across all regions
expressing an interest in this service, followed by mobile fund transfers.
A second-tier of mobile banking opportunities includes reports for potentially fraudulent behavior and the ability
to freeze bank cards, which reflects some of the security concerns around mobile banking services that are
discussed later in this report. The ability to receive marketing and promotional messages is the least compelling
service for consumers, while statements on request, overdraft and minimum balance alerts and stock market
information are of moderate interest to consumers across Asia Pacific.
However, the region is notable for its relatively wide country-specific differences in terms of the types of
mobile banking services consumers want to access. For example, consumers in Taiwan are significantly less
interested (23%) in using mobile phones for fund transfers than those in India (67%), Australia (75%) and
Singapore (71%). Conversely, Taiwanese consumers are more interested in receiving information, such as
interest rates (57%), and marketing / promotional messages (60%) than those in other regions, where little
interest is expressed. Survey respondent demographics for Taiwan are similar to those for other regions,
with the majority in the 25-44 age group, so further analysis into these apparent discrepancies could reveal
some interesting insights into the effectiveness of marketing messages for mobile banking services.
Meanwhile, consumers in India express the most concern around the security of mobile banking services.
In line with this they accounted for the largest percentage of survey respondents expressing an interest in the
ability to report potentially fraudulent transactions and to freeze cards via their mobile phones (67% for both).
Consumers in India and China are also more interested in receiving overdraft and minimum balance alerts to
their mobile phones than those in other regions, which could reflect the fact that both countries have a high
population of mobile users in the under-19 age group.
Interestingly, the ability to receive financial promotions and incentives is relatively low across all regions, which
perhaps reflects a broader debate in the mobile industry around more effective ways for consumers to receive
information or adverts that are ‘pushed’ to their mobile phones by service providers.
6
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r

7
51%
55%
55%
57%
61%
71%
86%
21%
38%
42%
53%
65%

75%
88%
48%
67%
67%
67%
47%
67%
92%
36%
70%
47%
51%
65%
36%
88%
19%
68%
28%
36%
64%
23%
84%








Account balance enquiries
Funds transfer
Payments via mobile
Ability to freeze a card
Statements on request
Reports of potentially
fraudulent transactions
Automatic updates when
transactions take place
14%
15%
26%
29%
40%
49%
20%
4%
18%
7%
50%
15%
35%
19%
28%
8%
59%
59%
49%

25%
45%
15%
30%
43%
19%
12%
30%
60%
19%
57%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%






Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore
Information eg: intetest
rates/exchange rates
Minimum balance alerts
Marketing/promotional messages
Stock market information
Financial offers & incentives
Overdraft alerts
Fig 1: Which of the following
mobile banking services would
you be interested in if offered
by your bank?
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Figure 2a & 2b set out to establish the gaps between mobile awareness of specific services and subsequent
adoption of those services.
As might be expected, Figure 2a and 2b show that the vast majority of mobile users in the survey sample are
familiar with (over 98% on average) and utilize (over 97%) text-based mobile services. Consumers in all regions
are also highly aware of entertainment services, such as music downloads and games), and mobile Internet
browsing, with a utilization ratio of roughly two-to-one for each of these services – so for every two consumers
that are aware of the service, one of them will access it.
For mobile banking services, utilization rates are slightly lower, but still encouraging. For example, 53% of
respondents are aware of mobile banking services, and nearly 19% use them – a ‘conversion rate’ of under
three-to-one, which is almost equal to that of mobile email. Likewise, of the 50% of respondents who are
aware of the ability to check bank balances on a mobile phone, 16% have used the service in the last three
months – again, a utilization rate of nearly three-to-one. This suggests that there is an opportunity to boost
uptake of mobile banking services by raising awareness, as the survey results suggest that where consumers
are made aware of mobile banking services nearly one-in-three will subscribe to them.
However, it is important to note that in the case of bank balance checking, the figures are highly skewed by
the results from India, where people are generally aware of services that enable them to make payments (63%)
and check bank balance from their mobile phones (84%). The gap between awareness and usage is lower
here given that 27% purchase goods and services and 42% check their account balances using their
mobile phones.
8
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
9
88%
89%
91%
99%
92%
85%
89%
98%
89%
84%
69%
100%
91%
90%
82%
95%
98%
95%
96%
100%
47%
51%
55%
69%
70%
84%
42%
31%
84%
54%
88%
60%
84%
81%
60%
39%
35%
77%
79%
88%
43%
66%
49%
54%
57%
69%
87%
38%
57%
69%
64%
42%
78%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%

Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore
Send/receive text messages
Play games
Play & store music
Access the Internet
E-mail
Check traffic reports/
get directions
Instant messaging
Check latest sport scores
Watch live TV
Make payments via mobile
Check bank balance
Fig 2a: Which of the
following mobile services
are you aware of?

52%
93%
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
However, if the responses from Indian respondents are removed, the average awareness percentage for the
remaining regions drops to 42% and the service utilization rate to just 6%. It could be argued that these findings
lend weight to the idea that higher awareness levels of mobile banking services could translate into greater
adoption rates. For example, 81% of Indian respondents are aware of the ability to check bank balances on a
mobile phone, with 49% having used the service in the last three months. Conversely, only 31% of Australian
respondents are aware of mobile banking payment services – which could explain why only 7% of the sample
had used the service in the last three months. In Taiwan, meanwhile, a 38% awareness level translated into
just 2% of respondents using their mobile phone to check bank balances.
While utilization rates for mobile banking services across all regions are relatively encouraging, the survey results
highlight a worrying lack of awareness across all regions in Asia Pacific, apart from in India. This is an important
point, given that in regions where awareness is high, such as India, use of mobile banking services is higher.
In addition, in regions where utilization is particularly low, such as in Taiwan, providers may need to analyze
why utilization rates are so poor – for example, it could be that consumers have concerns surrounding security
that are preventing them from using mobile banking services, in which case educational campaigns could help
to boost adoption rates.
10
24%
46%
56%
59%
99%
16%
41%
35%
24%
98%
55%
61%
32%
47%
100%
31%
64%
60%
76%
95%
25%
32%
51%
47%
94%





Play games
E-mail
1%
4%
6%
6%
9%
17%
22%
7%
13%
6%
29%
4%
4%
34%
49%
8%
49%
34%
1%
34%
9%
13%
11%
26%
3%
14%
2%
8%
4%
17%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%






Taiwan

China
India
Australia
Singapore
Send/receive
text messages
Play &
store music
Access
the Internet
Check traffic
reports/get
directions
E-mail
Instant
messaging
(eg:PC)
Check
latest
sports
scores
Check
bank
balance
Make
payments
via mobile
Watch
live TV
Fig 2b: Which of the
following mobile
services have you
used in the
last 3 months?
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
As shown in Figure 3, most survey respondents are still unsure whether their bank offers mobile banking
services, except those in India. The difference could be due to more effective marketing and promotional
campaigns in India, where 71% of survey respondents know that their bank did offer such services – only 13%
of respondents did not know. China has the second largest proportion of respondents who are aware that
their bank offers mobile banking services. It is no coincidence therefore that India and China also have the
highest usage rates for mobile banking services within Asia Pacific.
Conversely, a high proportion of respondents in Taiwan (68%) do not know if their bank offers mobile
banking services – this region corresponds to the lowest usage rates (see Figure 2b). The story in Singapore,
meanwhile, is slightly different, with 41% of respondents believing that their bank did not offer mobile banking
services – however, it is not clear whether this is an erroneous perception or if, indeed, few Singaporean
banks actually offer mobile banking services. The former is most likely, given that Singapore is one of the most
advanced locations in Asia Pacific in terms of infrastructure and mobile banking ‘readiness’.
11
Yes
No
Don’t know
Fig 3. Does your bank
offer mobile banking?
51%
41%
8%
54%
23%
23%
13%
17%
71%
47%
7%
46%
68%
18%
14%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore

A c a s e f o r c h a n g e
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Figure 4 again shows that the interest shown by respondents in the ability to access finances while on the
move varies significantly between each sub-region. Responses to the question of whether respondents
would consider switching banks if free mobile banking services were offered did not show such a wide
variation, with an average of 31% interested in the proposition.
Consumers in Australia expressed the most interest in being able to access their finances while on the move,
with 72% of respondents finding the prospect appealing, followed by China (50%). It is worth noting that both
samples include a high proportion of respondents in the 25-34 age group – Australia 69% of the sample, and
China 72%. Only 9% of Taiwanese respondents are interested in accessing their finances while on the move,
suggesting that Taiwan potentially offers the least attractive market opportunity for the provision of mobile
banking services.
However, only 28% of Australians would consider switching banks if these services were offered free of charge.
The reason for this large discrepancy is unclear, but it may that switching banks is particularly challenging in
Australia, which is a point worth noting by potential mobile banking services providers in the region.
Conversely, Chinese respondents were the most likely to consider switching banks if mobile banking services
were offered free – respondents in this region also expressed the most interest in receiving financial offers and
incentives around mobile banking, which highlights a promising strategy for engaging consumers with mobile
banking services in China.


12
Fig 4. Statements of agreement
surrounding enthusiasm for mobile
services.
I would like to be
able to deal with my
finances on the move
I would consider switching
to a bank if I was offered free
mobile banking
19%
39%
28%
72%
36%
30%
48%
50%
25%
9%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80%
T a i w a n
C h i n a
I n d i a
Au s t r a l i a
S i n g a p o r e

A c a s e f o r c h a n g e
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Meanwhile, only 9% of respondents in Taiwan expressed an interest in accessing their finances on a
mobile phone. However, 25% would consider switching banks if services were offered free.
Compared to Europe and the US, respondents in Asia Pacific expressed much lower interest in switching
accounts in exchange for free mobile banking services. This could relate to greater difficulties in switching
banks in this region or to the level of comfort felt by respondents in terms of the use of multiple providers for
current accounts, credit cards, loans and so on. Either way, it appears that offering free mobile banking
services alone would not be enough to attract potential customers to mobile banking in the Asia Pacific
region. Instead, it may be that educational awareness-raising campaigns are a better way forward for
increasing adoption.
13
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
As shown in Figure 5 (table) the degree to which consumers in Asia Pacific know their exact bank balance
shows a wide variation throughout the region. India (42%) and Taiwan (43%) have the largest proportion of
‘nano-economists’ – respondents who know the exact amount of their bank balance at any given time.
Again, the reasons behind such high levels of financial awareness are likely to be wide-ranging and may
include a lack of available funds, a prudent attitude to money or potential concerns over security.
Interestingly, responses from Taiwan showed a high degree of polarisation: despite having the largest
percentage of nano-economists in the Asia Pacific region, Taiwan also has the highest percentage of
respondents who have no idea what their bank balance is (30%) at any given time. This suggests that bank
balance updates via mobile phone can be an attractive initial proposition for consumers.
Respondents in the remaining four regions seemed to fall between two stools, with only a small proportion
either knowing the exact amount or having no idea – the reality is likely to be that the vast majority have some
idea of the state of their bank balance, but not a precise figure.

Fig 5: Degree to which people know amount of money in personal bank accounts
14
Singapore Australia India China Taiwan
% knowing the exact amount 13% 6% 42% 33% 43%
% have no idea 7% 6% 8% 14% 30%
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Figure 6 shows that, like Europe and the US, Asia Pacific respondents generally prefer to check their bank
balance on an ad hoc, or ‘need to know’, basis. Again though, the responses highlight some significant
cultural differences. Australian respondents, for example, prefer to check their bank balance either every
few days (44%) or weekly (29%) rather than on an ad hoc basis (15%), while 18% of respondents in China
check their account less than once a month.
Evidently, there will be considerable social and political reasons for differing approaches to personal finance and
differing levels of interest in knowing how much money is in the bank. Bank accounts are normally scrutinised most
closely by those with personal financial woes, to the more affluent with particularly dynamic accounts. In looking
at frequency, the objective is to understand at a general level how often any given region proactively seeks
personal financial information, using this as a gauge to establish how desirable a mobile service may be.

Fig 6. Frequency that
people check bank balances
15
2%
40%
12%
24%
19%
3%
0%
15%
6%
29%
44%
6%
4%
46%
17%
17%
8%
8%
18%
56%
14%
12%
0%
0%
7%
52%
23%
5%
14%
0%
0% 20% 40% 60%
Ta i wa n
Ch i n a
I n d i a
A u s t r a l i a
S i n g a p o r e

Daily
Every few days
Weekly
Monthly
Less than
once a month
Ad hoc/when
I need to
Mu l t i - me t h o d b a l a n c e c h e c k s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
With so many tools now available for checking bank accounts, it is no surprise that Asia Pacific respondents
reflect a wide variation in the methods they use to access their financial information, as shown in Figure 7.
Internet banking and visiting an ATM/cash point are the most popular methods, while a relatively low proportion
of consumers use telephone banking. Overall, mobile banking is the least used method for accessing account
information in Asia Pacific.
In Taiwan, 84% of respondents use ATMs to check their bank balances, while 45% obtain such information by
physically going to their banks, compared to just 20% who access account information via the Internet and 5%
via mobile phone. This suggests that although Taiwanese are receptive to new technology, they are very
prudent when dealing with their finances, preferring a more traditional approach.
Meanwhile, 50% of Indian respondents checked their bank balance on their mobile phone and 54% via the
Internet – although the majority still obtain account balance information through brick-and-mortar facilities such
as receiving statements through post (58%), ATM machines (54%), and visits to the banks (17%).
Australian respondents, however, much preferred
to access their bank balance via the Internet (88%),
with only 2% visiting their bank. A tentative argument
for this low proportion of bank visits could be due
to the dispersed nature of the Australian population,
with banks unlikely to be nearby. If this is the case,
then Australia would appear to represent strong
potential for the adoption of mobile banking services.
However, with only 4% of Australian respondents
having used mobile banking to access their bank
balance, there are clearly barriers that would need
to be overcome.
16
Fig 7.
Methods used to check bank balance

Internet
Via ATM/cash point
Statement in post
Go to bank
Via telephone
Mobile banking/
text from bank
4%
11%
7%
31%
74%
71%
4%
13%
2%
25%
54%
88%
50%
33%
17%
58%
54%
54%
14%
37%
30%
28%
49%
63%
5%
23%
45%
11%
84%
20%
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore

Mu l t i - me t h o d b a l a n c e c h e c k s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Chinese respondents use the full gamut of technology tools to access their bank balance, including 14% who
use their mobile phone. This suggests that the Chinese are more open to using different methods for accessing
bank balances (which may depend on convenience). At the same time, China has the highest percentage of
respondents in the 25-34 age group (72%) in Asia Pacific, as well as a relatively high proportion of users who
claim to keep pace with technology advances (47%) – i.e. a well-educated and technology-savvy population.
Taken together, these figures suggest that China is a potentially attractive target market for mobile banking
services.

17

Mo b i l e b a n k i n g s e c u r i t y
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
18
Fig 8:
Percentage of country
respondents believing that
mobile banking is either
secure (4) or very secure (5)
on a 1-5 scale


20%
46%

29%

16%
11%

0% 20% 40%
Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore
As shown in Figure 8, Australians have the most confidence in the security of mobile banking services in
Asia Pacific, whereas Taiwanese respondents expressed the least. While the low confidence levels are at first
glance disappointing, the responses do at least highlight consumer fears around the security of mobile banking
services – which could potentially be allayed through educational campaigns.
While Australia had the highest proportion of respondents who trusted their bank to safeguard their interest while
using mobile banking (46%), other responses (not shown here) identify security as a significant barrier to adoption
of mobile banking services in Australia, with 83% of respondents choosing it from a list of potential barriers.
Users also perceive the service difficult to use, with 33% saying they did not understand how to use mobile
banking and 17% believing that it is hard to use.
In Singapore, meanwhile, 20% of respondents felt that mobile banking was secure. However, 29% of our sample
thought that it was an unnecessary service. Indeed, since its inception in 1999 mobile banking has failed to
reach widespread consumer awareness in Singapore.
Chinese and Taiwanese respondents showed the
least confidence in the security of mobile banking
services. Consumers in Taiwan appear particularly
concerned with only 11% agreeing that the service
is secure or very secure, while over half of
respondents felt that it was not secure or not secure
at all. When asked to pick the main barrier to
mainstream adoption from a list, 70% of Taiwanese
respondents chose security. In China, only 16% of
respondents feel that mobile banking is secure.
However, a relatively large proportion (40%) were
neutral about the issue of security, suggesting that
there is potential to positively influence this particular
group of mobile phone users in China and change
their perception of mobile banking security.
Pa y me n t p r e f e r e n c e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
19

Figure 9 shows the willingness of those respondents who did show an interest in mobile banking to pay for
different services. Funds transfer and the ability to make payments via a mobile phone were, on average,
the most popular mobile banking services across Asia Pacific (both attracted 27% of respondents willing to
pay for these services). Unsurprisingly, respondents were least willing to pay to receive marketing and
promotional messages (1%) and financial offers and incentives (4%).
The desire for monitoring fraud was highlighted, with 23% of all respondents willing to pay for the ability to freeze
a card via mobile and 24% willing to pay to receive reports of potentially fraudulent activity. Indian respondents
expressed the most willingness to pay for these services, and Taiwanese the least. These figures support the
more general findings from Figure 5, which showed the Indian sample to be the most financially aware in terms
of knowing their exact bank balance at any time, while Taiwanese consumers are polarised between financial
awareness and an apparent disinterested approach to their finances, with 30% having no idea of the state of
their bank account.
Again there are wide variations between Asia Pacific regions in terms of willingness to pay for mobile banking
services. For example, Chinese and Indian respondents are generally the most willing to pay for the range of
mobile banking services, with Australians and Singaporeans generally the least willing. Indian respondents are
the most willing to pay for statements on their mobile phone (32%), while none in Taiwan expressed an interest
in paying for the service. However, Taiwanese respondents were most willing to pay for the ability to make
payments via mobile phone, and Chinese respondents showing strong willingness to pay to receive
overdraft alerts.
The figures highlight the importance of cultural differences and preferences when introducing mobile banking
services to different Asia Pacific regions. Where one region might be more amenable to paying for overdraft
alerts, another may have no interest at all, highlighting the importance of understanding consumer needs at a
regional level and tailoring services accordingly.

Pa y me n t p r e f e r e n c e s
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
20

Fig 9.
% interested respondents
willing to pay for mobile
banking services

13%
16%
17%
17%
20%
23%
9%
25%
20%
4%
26%
21%
5%
21%
35%
32%
37%
41%
5%
31%
31%
5%
27%
15%
17%
42%
15%
0%
23%
12%






1%
2%
3%
6%
6%
11%

12%
0%
0%
2%
10%
2%
11%
5%
0%
10%
14%
19%
14%
27%
5%
3%
8%
38%

8%
13%
24%
30%
0%
0%
3%
2%
14%
14%
12%

0% 10% 20% 30% 40% 50%








Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore
Minimum balance alerts
Overdraft alerts
Statements on request
Reports of potentially
fraudulent transactions on your
account
Being able to freeze card or
card transaction
Funds transfer
Information requests
eg: interest rates/exchange rates
Stock market information
Account balance enquiries
Automatic updates when
transactions take place
Financial offers and incentives
Marketing/promotional messages
Payment via mobile
Te c h n o - l i t e r a t e
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
One of the considerations that mobile service providers have to factor into their mobile content strategy is the
issue of technology formats. Though this challenge is being overcome with each new iteration of delivery
platforms and devices, (lack of) compatibility is something that can confuse users.
Fig 10: Awareness of technology formats

Singapore Australia India China Taiwan
Don't know 14% 31% 18% 5% 7%
Java ready 7% 8% 18% 9% 2%
WAP 66% 79% 88% 91% 93%
MMS 85% 82% 79% 88% 84%

However, the majority of users throughout Asia Pacific are familiar with technologies such as MMS and
WAP (84% and 83%, respectively) – respondents from Singapore were the least likely to know if their mobile
phone offered WAP services (66%). A far lower proportion know if their mobile phone is Java ready (9%),
while 15% of respondents do not know the technology formats available on their mobile phone. Indians are
most aware of Java (18%), while Australians are least likely to not know which formats their phone
supports (31%).


21

Te c h n o - l i t e r a t e
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
As shown in Figure 11, however, there is a dichotomy in how Australians perceive their technology prowess,
with the highest proportion (13%) of all the Asia Pacific regions describing themselves as ‘technology leaders’.
The majority of mobile phone users describe themselves as techno-watchers or techno-followers – that is,
they are happy to keep pace or stay just ahead of the curve.
Perhaps the most important consideration for banks regarding the technology awareness of mobile users is
that enthusiasm for mobile banking is not technology driven. Techno-phobes are no more or less likely to
desire mobile banking services than ‘early adopters’ in the survey. It is a practical need to keep a handle on
finances rather than a want for state-of-the-art services that is likely to create the strongest driver for
mobile banking.



22

11%
22%
33%
32%
2%
10%
10%
31%
35%
13%

17%
13%
25%

42%
4%
16%
5%
21%
47%
12%
2%
2%
39%
48%
9%
0% 20% 40% 60%

Taiwan
China
India
Australia
Singapore
Techno-leader
Techno-watcher
Techno-follower
Techno-resistant
Techno-phobe
Fig 11:
Which of the following
best describes your
approach to technology?
Concl usi on
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Asia Pacific offers an interesting region view in terms of both diversity and enthusiasm for mobile banking
when compared across the three international territories (Asia Pacific, Americas and Europe) that have been
engaged in the Sybase 365 Mobile Banking survey. Striking comparison between the techno-centric hubs
of Singapore and Taiwan and setting them against the more ‘Western’ composition of Australia and the
huge societal and geographic diversities of India and China will always present challenges. However, there
are many observations that, at an international level, are wholly consistent with the Americas and European
regions and worthy of review.
It is important to see the bigger picture of banking services when looking at mobile technology. Beyond the
globally accepted use of text messaging, its usage is widely associated with dynamic forms of information,
such as sports fixtures and news events. However, dynamic content can also be relevant to people when
looking at personal financial information, especially for those individuals with ‘lively’ accounts, or, as is more
pertinent to Asia Pacific regions, people who may struggle with telecommunications infrastructure for fixed
line internet access.
Mobile banking is gaining traction in Asia Pacific on a number of levels, though the speed at which each
region adopts mobile banking clearly differs. India has a greater enthusiasm for mobile banking services
than Taiwan, for example. However, mobile penetration rates in India are considerably smaller than in its
Far Eastern neighbours, with only one fifth of Indians possessing mobile devices against 103% mobile
penetration in Taiwan. The contradiction of less devices but greater mobile service use can be answered to
some extent by the fact that India has three times the number of mobile internet users (31.3 million) than
fixed line internet users (9 million) (source: Trai 2007). In short, Indian mobile device use is fundamentally
different, mirroring the region’s sentiment towards mobile banking.
As a market in its infancy, it is interesting to watch how mobile banking develops and which financial
institutions become the trailblazers in offering consumers another tool with which to monitor and manage
their finances. For the financial institution, the value in offering mobile services is two-fold – revenue
generation and cost reduction.
Revenue generation, not surprisingly, is often presented as the more ‘vibrant’ area for businesses to focus on,
especially in the media and entertainment fields where premium pay mobile content creates exciting new
revenue opportunities. However, the survey shows that there are monetisation opportunities for the financial
sector as people are prepared, in some cases, to pay for premium personal finance and security services
using a mobile.



23

Concl usi on
Na n o - e c o n o mi c s :
Mo b i l e o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r t h e f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r
Cost reduction provides an additional business proposition for mobile banking services. Creating data services
to lighten the burden on customer service infrastructure, whilst also adding value to the customer experience,
is more likely to strengthen a business case for banks to ‘go mobile’. In short, banks need a 360-degree view
of mobile service deployment and its benefits to customer and operational expenditure alike.
The impetus now is for mobile and banking sectors to encourage mobile banking services and to highlight
the benefits of mobile banking to an audience who are likely to be open to using another tool to support their
enthusiasm for personal financial services in a more immediate manner than the Internet can afford.
Though diversity within the Asia Pacific region is an important consideration, the survey helps to answer some
of the more fundamental questions that financial institutions grapple with when formulating mobile strategy.
For example, there is considerable interest in mobile banking services across these huge populations and,
in some areas, encouraging levels of service awareness to adoption ratios. Awareness is key if banking is to
realise the opportunities presented by mobile services. Most of the Asia Pacific mobile user base is a largely
untapped market in terms of mobile banking and there appears to be evident potential to expand existing
efforts in helping consumers link to their banks via mobile data.
In response to the findings, Sybase 365 has developed five key considerations for evolving mobile services and
adoption in the banking sector.
• Increase awareness of mobile banking services amongst customer base
• Develop more sophisticated mobile data services beyond balance and payment updates
• Establish the enthusiasm for mobile banking services with different aspects of the customer demographic
• Evaluate operational savings of text ‘push’ services to replace aspects of customer service proposition
• Use flexibility of mobile data projects to validate wider strategy mobile services expansion
Mobile banking is not necessarily a panacea for all customer needs. Like any technology format it is a tool that
can enhance existing services. Customers are keen to be kept abreast of any changes to the nano-economy
and it appears that existing mobile provisioning could capitalise on this opportunity and better capture the
imagination of mobile users. Innovation and cost management are critical tenets for commercial success in the
financial sector and mobile banking services are capable of delivering against both of these objectives if
appropriately executed.



24

For further information
please contact:
Jean Loh
jean.loh@sybase.com
Tel: +60 3 2713 0888