Buoyed by the fast uptake of smartphones and tablets in South Africa, First National Bank Ltd. says it has become the first financial institution in that country to offer a mobile banking application to its customers.

The banking app is available for Apple, Google Android and Research In Motion BlackBerry devices, including smartphones and tablets.

However, tablet users will have a more pixilated view because the app is designed for phones, a bank representative says.

To use the app, users must be registered mobile and online banking customers of First National, the representative says. Users will be able to check balances, transfer funds, make bill and card payments and get transaction details, he says.

The app also has a location feature.