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Most Indian banking apps lag behind in functionality: Report

Despite the renewed push for digital due to the Covid-19 pandemic, most Indian mobile banking apps, except ICICIs iMobile app, are behind the curve on functionality, says a new report from market research firm Forrester.

About 70 per cent of Indian online adults with a bank account do their banking on a mobile app or website using their smartphone, show data from Forrester.

However, compared with 2019, banks have improved their user experience only marginally and lag behind in functionality, said the report which evaluated the smartphone apps of five banks in India — Axis Bank, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank, and State Bank of India (SBI).

For the study, the researchers scored banks' mobile apps on 39 functionality and 24 user experience criteria.

"While banks have been focusing on improving UX (user experience), they do not give equal attention to all aspects of it. ICICI Bank does a good job of streamlining payment experiences but can do better at error prevention," said the report.

"Axis Bank offers clutterfree visual design and clear content but lacks help pages. HDFC Bank helps customers prevent errors and shares privacy information up front but falters with unclear language and marketing material that impedes progress," it added.

Kotak Mahindra Bank does well with its chatbot but stumbles with poor search, the research showed.

"SBI offers good content around spending patterns but fails to provide sufficient privacy and security cues and content," according to the report titled "The Forrester Digital Experience Review: Indian Mobile Banking Apps, Q3 2020".

The results showed that functionality scores of four banks fell.

Functionality scores of ICICI Bank, which emerged as the overall digital experience leader, remained unchanged, said the report..