Intuit Inc. is testing an application that can deliver data about consumers' bank accounts to their mobile phones through text messages.
The Mountain View, Calif., company said a free test version of its Quicken Beam software can be downloaded at its Web site.
People can use text messages to request their current account balances and view recent transactions. They can also configure the software to deliver text-message alerts if their balances fall below a certain level or in response to specific types of transactions.
Intuit said the software can help users avoid paying overdraft fees and identify suspicious transactions that could be a red flag for identity theft.
"Giving consumers a free, simple, and universal tool that alerts them when account balances are low will help them steer clear of additional charges," Todd Stanley, an Intuit vice president and its general manager for Quicken, said in a press release Tuesday.
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Corrected August 26, 2008 at 6:42PM: An earlier version of this story mischaracterized Intuit's Quicken Beam. It is a mobile banking service, not software, and it does not require users to download anything to their phones.