Monese: Get a banking account in minutes

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Monese: 56,000 people on the waiting list can’t be wrong

Monese offers anyone with an address in the European Economic Area (EEA) the opportunity to open a UK bank account. As long as a user is 18 and lives in the EEA, you can apply to open an account, regardless of citizenship or nationality. The EEA has seen a huge number of migrants over the past few years and integrating into the local banking system has proven a challenge. Monese makes opening a bank account (almost) as easy as opening a social media account.

Opening a UK bank account is amazingly easy

The site is building a waiting list, so you’ll need an invite to start the account opening process. Once you have one, everything is automated. The company can verify a user’s identity — just take a picture of your ID card and a picture of yourself and the rest of the signup process is guided.

Once an account is verified by confirming various personal details (the app does not run credit checks and is open to anyone, regardless of creditworthiness) , it operates very much like a regular bank account.

If an account cannot be verified, a user can still use his/her account but on a more limited basis.

  • Hold and make card payments and cash withdrawals for up to £1,750 a year
  • Make card transactions and use your card to shop online for up to £700 a day
  • Withdraw cash up to £300 a day

A user would have to verify his/her identity to exceed the limits mentioned above.

What services come with a Monese account?

Monese users get the benefits of a real financial app with banking services behind it.

  • local and international money transfers
  • debit card
  • mobile app to track personal finances
  • one-click sending money to friends

Most basic banking services are free. Users pay for international money transfers and using the app abroad, as well as for ATM withdrawals.

monese pricing

Overall, the app’s been pretty well received by the media (TheNextWeb, Business Insider). Banking apps are becoming de rigueur in the industry. Finding apps that attempt to service the unbanked is an even bigger challenge. Monese seems to be positioned well to acquire new customers who face challenges for the existing banking infrastructure.

Where to download Monese

You can download Monese here

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Bloomberg’s BusinessWeek app launches to mixed reviews

Bloomberg Businessweek announced the launch of a beta version of its new Businessweek iPad app, available as an iTunes subscription for $2.99/month.

Pro

Dan Frommer is a pretty glowing in his admiration of the app, actually impressed with Bloomberg Businessweek’s new iPad app.

Bigger picture: While you could say that weekly business magazines are already irrelevant in the Twitter era, Bloomberg is at least spending money on making good products. (That’s the beauty of having a cash-printing terminal business with which to fund Bloomberg TV, magazines, etc.)

Con

TechCrunch’s Erick Schonfield is underwhelmed, calling the app nothing more than a digital reproduction of the magazine.

But with the iPad app, I am not getting all of that. It is nothing more than a digital reproduction of the print magazine. The news changes only once a week. In a world where news changes every minute, that lag time is one legacy you don’t want to bring over from print. And Businessweek doesn’t have to either. It’s website changes every day, and there is no reason those articles shouldn’t show up in the iPad app. Even the search function in the app only works for iPad issues in your archives. It doesn’t return results from the website.

By making its iPad app less informative than its website, Bloomberg Businessweek is signaling to readers that if they want to stay up to date they will be better off simply going to the website, which is free. So Bloomberg Businessweek thinks readers will want to pay $2.99 a month for less information that is presented in a prettier format. What readers end up paying for, essentially, is the tablet experience and bigger fonts.

Bloomberg’s app for Businessweek joins a host of other magazines trying to recreate themselves in the age of social media, apps, and mobile devices. From the Financial Times to Elle to Popular Science, publishers are signing on to Apple’s subscription service (or intend to).

E*Trade rolls out Android app, gears up for big push in mobile

crowdfunding

E*Trade announced the launch of a mobile application — the E*Trade Mobile Pro for Android.

E*Trade account holders can

  • View real-time streaming stock and options quotes
  • Access real-time news and information
  • Trade stocks during regular market and extended hours sessions
  • View orders, alerts, news, charts, watchlists, and portfolios
  • View a “Complete View” of all E*TRADE brokerage and bank accounts

This app launch for Android rounds out E*Trade’s mobile applications which include products for iPhone and Blackberry.  As of November 2010, customers have moved close to $1billion dollars via E*TRADE Mobile Pro since its launch.Like E*Trade, the brokers seem to be focused on continuing to push out offerings for mobile.

The Atlantic on WSJ iPad app: It’s working

Interesting analysis on The Atlantic today regarding the WSJ’s paid content experiment on the iPad.

Let’s remember (from the article):

  • Apple sold about 500,000 iPad units in its first week
  • 3200 WSJ iPad apps sold so far at $17.29/mo (or bundled together with other editions)
  • 30,000 current WSJ subs trialing a free version of the app — so room for paid conversion

Rupert Murdoch has been a loud proponent of paid, subscription content as a revenue model.  It will be interesting to see how this all pans out.  Ultimately, it may be Apple, though,  that wins in the whole movement towards new forms of paid financial content.