Barclays is giving 1 million customers the ability to deposit cheques remotely by taking photographs with their phones – cheque imaging.
the UK government decided to push ahead with legislation that lets banks and building societies process cheque images – rather than the physical paper – for the first time.
With the technology getting a positive response from customers – 90% say that it enables them to do everything they want – it is being rolled out to one million Premier Account holders.
A pilot is also in the pipeline for corporate customers, which between them still put through around 46 million cheques each year, with a value in excess of £100 billion, says Barclays.
Next year the trial will be extended to Android-based smartphones and the bank is also looking to introduce the technology to charities who are set to be big winners as 66% of their donations come in the form of cheques.
Ashok Vaswani, chief executive, personal and corporate banking, Barclays, says: “Innovations like this are all about giving our customers more choice, saving them time and money and ensuring they can do their banking where and when it suits them best.”
Cheque imaging has proved popular in the US. According to data compiled by Celent, some 20 million consumers used mobile remote deposit capture last year compared with 10.9 million in 2012. The analyst house predicts the mobile user base will increase to 33 million this year, 47 million in 2015, and 61 million by 2016.