MUMBAI: ICICI BankBSE -1.87 % India’s largest private sector bank by consolidated assets, announced the launch of a mobile banking app for rural customers that allow them to access banking services as well as information on agri services. The app is open for both bank customers as well as others and is available in eleven different languages.
Named ‘Mera iMobile’, it allows users in rural areas to avail as many as 135 services — some of which are unprecedented in the industry — on their mobile phone, helping them to save the time and cost of visiting a branch to avail these services. The list of services include Kisan Credit Card, Gold Loan, Farm Equipment Loan and loans to Self-Help Groups (SHGs). The app also enables them to undertake an array of frequently used banking services from their smartphone, without using mobile internet services.
Additionally, it is the first banking app to offer agriculture related information like crop-wise mandi prices of nearly 230 crop varieties across 460 mandis. It also displays taluka-wise weather update for close to 3700 talukas across and over 300 districts, aiding farmers to plan their sowing and harvesting activities conveniently and in an informed manner. ‘Mera iMobile’ is the only banking app to provide these value added services in one single app for the rural customer.
“At ICICI Bank, we believe in investing in innovative technology much ahead of its time. In line with this philosophy, ICICI Bank has pioneered many innovative solutions for its customers like internet, mobile, Tab and ‘Touch Banking’ branches among others. Today, India has the second largest – internet user base and smartphone market globally. We envisage that the next wave of growth in internet usage will come from rural India due to growth in cheaper smartphone handsets, spread of wireless networks and evolving consumer behavio,” said Chanda Kochhar, chief executive at ICICI Bank.
To enable easy download and proper functioning of the app in areas with low internet speed, the app has been made light wight. The bank is further going to introduce Wifi hostpots at its 700 rural and semi urban branches. The Bank also plans to mount these posters on vans and cycles to enable download of the app at places with high footfalls like haats and common areas in villages.