Fortune is reporting that Australia’s Commonwealth Bank and Facebook are quietly building the first Facebook banking app:
“Facebook is quietly planning just such an offering with Australia’s Commonwealth Bank. Currently in an internal beta, with the first version built in March, the application is expected to launch sometime this year to customers. It will allow Facebook users who are bank customers to make payments to third parties as well as Facebook friends through the social media channel, according to the bank. Commonwealth will secure transactions with its own authentication system — similar to how payments are secured on its online and mobile banking site, a spokesperson says.”
It’s an interesting experiment and also quite logical, given the rising interest of financial services companies in the use of social media. In combination with a fundamental shift in cosumer behavior - the younger generations are heavy users of social media plus the older gernerations are also adopting these platforms - it makes a lot of sense to use social networks also for financial transactions. For the banks the critical question is whether they want to use a third party (like Facebook) or whether they will be capable to offer their own social media channels - not onlöy for communication but also for transactions.