Written by:
Eric Leenders, Managing Director, Personal, UK Finance

Yesterday saw the release of several interesting reports on how people across the UK use the internet.

The latest ONS report was particularly interesting. Entitled Internet access – households and individuals: 2017, it found that 90% of households in Great Britain had internet access, up 33% since 2006. What’s more, daily internet use has grown from 35% in 2006 to 80% in 2017.

It’s clear that internet presence in households is fast becoming a near ubiquitous phenomenon, but the report also found that internet use is increasing beyond the home. 73% of adults accessed the internet “on the go” using a mobile phone or smartphone.

A key part of our daily routine, the internet has changed the way we conduct our everyday activities, improving convenience and ease. Take managing our finances, for example.

The ONS report found that internet banking is on the up, with 63% of adults using it in 2017. Similarly, our Way We Bank Now report published earlier this summer in partnership with EY found that 19.6 million people used banking apps in 2016 with 159 logins every second.

People are also increasingly using banking apps to access a broader range of services, such as savings, credit cards and mortgage/investments accounts, rising by 30%, 46% and 86% respectively from 2015 to 2016 alone.

A second report – Ofcom’s annual Communications Market Report – also published yesterday, analysed communications behaviour over the last twelve months. It found banking to be one of the top five activities people chose when asked what they use the internet for, coming above social networking sites, with around half of all adults in the UK having used the internet for banking or online shopping in the past week.

The younger generation were particularly keen on app based banking with 8 in 10 mobile app users aged between 16 and 24 using at least one finance related app, this includes banking apps like Android and Apple Pay, for example.

Overall, there has been year-on-year growth in the use of banking services via a mobile phone; electronic payments increased by 3% among mobile internet users in 2017, with 23% using their mobile phone for this at least once a month.

Both reports highlight a common trend across banking and finance, as well as society at large – the consumer led digital revolution.

As the internet becomes an even greater tenet of our daily and social lives, it’s anticipated that apps will develop in tandem, with the banking and financial sector expected to mirror this pattern, developing digital solutions to life’s everyday activities.

It’s not all digital however, thanks to a partnership between banks and Post Office customers can now also do their banking at their nearest Post Office branch. As well as physical bank branches, there seems to be more ways than ever for customers to manage their finances in a way that suits them.

We look forward to what the future holds in terms of financial technology and internet banking and, with the increase in Fintech and introduction of Open Banking, who knows what developments 2018 will bring.

Banking’s digital revolution continues
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