How To Choose Your Mobile Banking Flavor

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TUKWILA, Wash.-Which of the three mobile banking flavors is best-APP, WAP or SMS?

BECU likes downloadable applications (APP) because they deliver a superior member experience, said Howie Wu, VP-virtual banking. After initial authentication, members simply use a PIN to log-in to the downloadable application, which permanently resides on the user's device. And APP mobile banking services are custom-built for use on handheld devices, he said.

In contrast, wireless application protocol (WAP) is just a "screen scrape" of the CU's online banking platform that is optimized for mobile device screens. Icons and services are harder to see and navigate. Worse, "you have to log-in with your user name, password and PIN and go through multi-factor authentication frequently," Wu said. "That's not always an optimal experience on a handheld."

Members may never see SMS text banking from BECU, Wu added. "We're staying away from SMS text banking because it creates a poor user experience, and we're not happy with security."

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