When we use apps, there’s nothing more gratifying than a great experience. But when it comes to apps that deal with secure information, money and banking in general, user experience is often undermined by procedures necessary to ensure security levels.
There are many instances we can think of, but here I would like to talk about just one: the log-in and how the smartwatch can be a game changer on security.
This log-in step really impacts the user experience. It’s an extra barrier the user needs to go through to access whatever he or she needs, and it’s an effort that can heavily influence the success of a service on a mobile device.
But the good news is that while this is a necessary step on a PC or smartphone, often on smartwatches it’s just not required.
Let me explain.
Wearables are so personal, they can be viewed as a sort of virtual or digital ID, for three main reasons:
1. PROXIMITY AWARENESS A smartwatch app can be set to work only in conjunction with and in the proximity of a smartphone – too far from a smartphone and it won’t function properly.
2. SELF-ACTIVATED SECURITY Most smartwatches know if they are worn or not. When not worn, a smartwatch can activate auto-security features, and apps can be programmed to not even store information in the watch.
3. PHYSICAL CONNECTION Smartwatches are in contact with the skin of the individual most of the time – and you notice if it’s not with you. Plus, this physical contact gives a whole new perspective on security — like utilizing biometric data as means of identification.
So – as a general rule – when a smartwatch is being used, there’s a higher probability it’s the legitimate user's. No other smart device has such security. Therefore, the classic situations of “somebody tried to access my account from the web” or “someone stole my phone and accessed my data” don’t apply to a smartwatch the way they frequently do to smartphones.
While this isn’t as safe as the log-in step, it does raise the standard of security to an acceptable level for certain information.
We’re already seeing this. It’s not unusual to use smartwatch apps from banks that allow users to access their balance without providing their ID (the same operation on a smartphone requires user credentials). As a result, it’s now much easier and more convenient for smartwatch owners to check their balance on their wearable than on a smartphone.
So what does this mean?
To begin with, a far better experience for your customers. But there’s more: it enables the creation of new value propositions. In the banking case, a simple balance-checking feature can turn into a new interaction model for banks with their wearables apps. Services once dependent on IDs and passwords are now easy to use, and a breath of fresh air for the consumer.
There’s great value with a smartwatch app that can allow your banking business to shine, and grow.
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