Firm launches banking app for wearable technology

A new banking app has been launched by British firm Intelligent Environments for use with Pebble wearable smart devices

The British firm Intelligent Environments has launched a new banking app for use with Pebble wearable smart devices.

This adds to the growing number of capabilities for wearable technology, which has been breaking into the business sector during the new bring your own device (BYOD) era.

The wearable computing trend has been gradually growing. With devices such as Pebble Watches, Google Glass and Nike FuelBands, people are able to get the information they need without having to look at their smartphone or other devices.

Despite Samsung, Pebble and Sony entering the smart-watch market space recently, Gartner says it will be an unpopular market this Christmas. Gartner suggested that this slow uptake is as a result of lack of available apps and difficulty changing streams from the health and fitness market into the wider consumer space.

"The convenience aspect of using a watch for interaction while leaving the larger-screen phone or tablet in the bag or pocket is something that users can relate to and probably recognise its value," said Annette Zimmermann, principal research analyst at Gartner. "However, there are still several significant barriers to mainstream adoption, including low interest and awareness among consumers, poor design and price."

An increase in apps such as the banking app by Intelligent Environments may help boost the sale of smart watches in the future as long as banks are willing to allow consumers to check their accounts using this method.

The app, which was set up to commemorate the 30th anniversary of first online banking system Homelink, is designed for use with the Pebble Smartwatch, as well as other Pebble devices, and will help customers to easily track their finances.

Using the app and watch combo, users can check their current balance and recent transactions, and can use the app to set up warnings such as a vibrating alert when they are near overdraft limit. The app allows users to check these details with more ease than physically travelling to a bank or taking the time to log into an online account on a PC or smartphone.

Intelligent Environments is now talking with a range of banks in the hope they will soon allow customers to use this smart technology.

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