Bank of America deepened its mobile banking portfolio this week with the addition of downloadable native apps for the Windows Phone 7 platform and Apple's iPad.
The two new apps are part of the bank's overall move to refresh its mobile application offerings, says Marc Warshawsky, the Charlotte, N.C.-based bank's SVP of Mobile Channel Design and Planning.
"Overall with the new apps that we’re going to be coming out with, customers can expect to see a much quicker interaction because of the way the apps are built," he adds. "And they will see overall improvements in the look as well."
BofA is the first U.S. bank to release an app for Windows Phone 7. Microsoft launched the new mobile operating system last October.
"We’re really excited about this app," Warshawsky says. "This is the first banking app on the Windows Phone 7 platform. What we’re excited about is the way we’ve tailored the look and feel of this app in conjunction with the Windows Phone 7 operating system."
While the bank has incorporated all the features of its Mobile Banking from Bank of America Android and iOS apps -- things like account balances, transaction history, bill pay and branch and ATM location -- it worked to design the app to match the look and feel unique to the Windows Phone 7 platform. It was important, Warshawsky says, not to make that operating system's users feel like they were given an app that was simply ported over from another smartphone version.
Warshawsky says Bank of America anticipates Microsoft's will be a growing mobile platform, and that the BofA wanted to be ahead of the game while at the same time offering a unique experience. Some of the bank's customers had been asking for it as well.
"We certainly had some customer feedback asking about a WP7 experience, and that is something that we want to provide for our customer," Warshawsky says. "Both because they were asking for it and because we anticipate that platform to grow."
Eliminating the question as to whether Bank of America is serious about being available on every mobile platform, the bank simultaneously launched a version of its Mobile Banking tailored specifically for Apple's iPad. In addition to carrying over the standard set of features available in BofA's mobile apps, the iPad edition also brings an enhanced calendar display of eBills, transfers and bill pay transactions and displays account balances in an online banking ledger layout.
Warshawsky says the iPad's screen real estate lends itself to a richer experience, and that BofA has taken advantage of the extra space.