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Smartphone banking users top 40 million in South Korea

Staff writer |
The number of South Koreans who make banking transactions through smartphones topped 40 million for the first time since such banking services were introduced.

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Smartphone banking users reached 40.34 million as of the end of March, up 8.5 percent from three months ago, according to the Bank of Korea (BOK). From a year earlier, it surged 44 percent.

The number of tech-savvy users has risen rapidly since the smartphone banking services were adopted four and a half years ago. The figure included multiple accounts in different banks by the same person.

The users mainly checked bank account balance and transferred a small sum of money via such services. In terms of value, smartphone banking service accounted for only 4.5 percent of the total Internet banking services.

The users of other form of mobile banking services, including integrated circuit (IC) chip and virtual machine (VM) services, continued to fall amid widespread usage of smartphones.

The number of Internet banking users, including mobile banking users, reached 97.75 million as of end-March, up 2.4 percent from three months earlier.

Transactions via the Internet banking posted a daily average of 36.14 trillion won (35.23 billion U.S. dollars) during the January- March period, with the smartphone banking amounting to 1.63 trillion won.

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