The Malaysian branch of a Singaporean multinational banking organisation reported that its customers’ use of digital payment methods in 2018 has grown by almost 50% over the year before, a report noted.
In a statement, the bank noted that the increase reflected the changes in the way customers choose to make payments and are in line with the bank’s efforts to harness technology to make banking simpler, smarter and safer to meet its customers’ changing lifestyle preferences.
Digital payments via the bank’s internet banking service have grown by 25% between January 2017 and December 2018. Customers also made three times more digital payments through the bank’s mobile banking service, in December 2018 compared with 12 months earlier.
The bank’s managing director stated that the rise in digital payment methods reflected consumers’ changing banking behaviour and preferences with the proliferation of smartphones and the Internet.
He noted that with consumers now relying even more on their smartphones for their day-to-day needs, the bank is seeing that customers are doing more banking on the go. With the internet and the smartphone now an indispensable part of everyday life, customers have come to rely on their devices to perform a host of functions, including making payments.
The bank’s customers are turning to mobile and internet banking services to make peer-to-peer payments given the added convenience and security digital payments provide.
According to the bank’s data, peer-to-peer payments or digital fund transfers were the most popular digital payment transactions in 2018. Two in three internet and mobile banking transactions by UOB customers were peer-to-peer payments in 2018. Over the same period, customers also used digital payment methods to pay their bills and make credit card payments.
These accounted for 32% of all digital transactions carried out by customers last year. The rise of digital fund transfers coincides with a decline in the use of cheques in peer-to-peer payment. Cheque payments have declined by almost 30% in the last two years.
It was noted that customers’ preference for digital fund transfers over cash or cheque transactions was supported by the growing number of digital payment solutions available to Malaysian consumers.
The bank is offering its customers a chance to enjoy cash rebates of RM10 when they register for the bank’s peer-to-peer payment facility provided by Payment Network Malaysia.