Monday, July 18, 2011

New Touch Friendly Mobile Site Now Live

We've been working hard on an improved mobile experience and today we are making the new site available.

We've improved every aspect of the site to make it work great on today's touchscreen smartphones and mobile devices. As you'll see when you use it, the site is much faster and the buttons and links are easy to read and "click" with your fingers.

In addition to all the functionality we offered previously, we've now added the ability to schedule transfers and Web Payments, find branches and ATMs using your GPS services and to access Money Management Tools.

From within your account history on Web Branch mobile, you can categorize transactions and add labels and notes. In addition, you can view and manage your pending items to stay on top of your true current and future balances.

Easily add a shortcut
to your iPhone's home screen
The new site works great on Android, Blackberry, iPhone, Windows Mobile 7 and WebOS.

To get started, to go m.uwcu.org in your mobile browser. For iPhone users, you can easily create a home screen shortcut to jump right back to the site.

42 comments:

  1. This is great news! Thanks for continuing to keep us members spoiled with your fantastic online presence. Now if only we could deposit checks with photos...

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  2. Thanks for the nice words Skylar. We are currently in the process of evaluating check depositing via mobile. That is not something we can currently do with the mobile web site so it makes things a bit more complicated.

    If we are going to do it, we want to do it well. It is still new enough that there are enough issues with the technology to make it a difficult process. The existing examples out there aren't up to our standards--7+ days waiting for credit to your account doesn't seem very appealing.

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  3. No, that definitely does not sound like a very appealing solution. I'm glad to hear that y'all are looking into it, though.

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  4. Great news! I'd be very interested in mobile check deposits but you're right, the 7 day waiting period is pretty long! Although for times when you have to deposit a check and are out of the area it would be worth waiting the extra time.

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  5. Great update. Will we see full, secure, downloadable applications for android & iPhones in the future vs using mobile sites?

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  6. Regarding apps for iPhone and Android. The only thing we can't do via the mobile site is the check deposits discussed in the comments above. As we assess that technology, it will inform us how to move forward on apps in general. Creating apps is completely different than developing web sites. It is a large (and expensive) undertaking for us and we don't believe in just doing something to say we have it. If it can't be a really great member experience, we'd rather not have it at all.

    The new mobile site is very app-like. I'm curious what features you'd like to see in a mobile app that we aren't already doing in the mobile site.

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    1. Hi Eric, App development being very different from making a mobile website, have you looked into PhoneGap?

      I haven't tried it yet for my projects iPhone projects, so I can't tell you if it'd be possible to share a code-base with the mobile site, yet.

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    2. We are aware of PhoneGap and other products like it. If we were to do app development in-house, we'd likely use a tool like that. One issue we have with apps is maintaining all the different versions and those tools would theoretically help.

      There are still many other issues with our supporting an app, whether it is in-house developed or purchased from a vendor. Things like managing the different app stores, pushing out bug fixes and multiple versions of an OS (Android is very fragmented at this point) make supporting an app a very costly endeavor. We also have very high standards for the quality of anything we put the UWCU logo on and don't want to have an app just to say we have one. It needs to bring something new to the table and work as well or better than our mobile site.

      Thanks for your comment. If you end up using PhoneGap and find it to work well, be sure to report back.

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    3. Eric,

      Thanks for all the great answers but, you guys need and app. I have one from anchorbank for my Iphone and it works great. I wish you had one for my girlfriend who just got an Iphone.

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    4. We've made a lot of progress in the second half of the year to solidify our abilities to offer an app (that will be really great and offer all the functionality our members expect). We hope to begin development in January and offer it in the first half of 2013.

      Thanks to everyone for you patience--some things are worth the wait!

      Delete
  7. I too would really like to see mobile check cashing and would happily wait the 7 days for deposit. I moved outside UW's area and am trying to keep my accounts with UWCU, but it is increasingly difficult without mobile check cashing.

    A suggestion, whenever you do make this happen, please include the feature for business accounts as well. Some of your competitors do not allow business checks to use mobile deposit.

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  8. I agree with the previous comments about mobile check deposit. I have lived in New York State the last 5 years and have stubbornly kept my UWCU accounts open...but this would make it easier than my current process. Which is to have an account with a "local" credit union, deposit the check in person, then transfer it to my UWCU account. 7 days seems like a dream in comparison.

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  9. This is a **FANTASTIC** mobile website!!! Kudos for the undertaking. To all those who are asking for an app - just make a shortcut on your home screen!

    Echoing everyone else - Mobile Deposit is really what you need to stay ahead of the Credit Union curve. Maybe you could make a portion of funds available (such as $50), and/or require a Line of Credit or Credit Card as a guarantee. I think most people would be OK with a convenience vs. availability tradeoff. Personally if I was desperate to cash a large check, I would not have the expectation that deposit from mobile would be a viable channel. Banks have to CYA too in today's world of fraud!

    Keep up the good work :) Your technology, site design, customer service surpasses most other S&L / credit unions!

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  10. Thanks for the nice comments Brad. I appreciate hearing that there is an understanding regarding our risk when offering a service like remote deposits. Your ideas are good ones and we will take those things into account if we move forward.

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  11. Indeed, I love the new site. There is literally nothing I can think of to add or even to constructively criticize.
    For everyone asking for mobile deposit: It would indeed be more convenient, but UWCU supports depositing checks by mail -- endorse it, mark it for deposit only, and send it in and it usually appears in a bit less than a week depending on mail speeds. It's pretty awesome for us former Wisconsinites.

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  12. Eric,

    I have an account with Baxter credit union (BCU), they have photo deposit, and the transactions happens immediately. I believe the service is called "deposit anywhere" It is built into their iPhone app. The few times I have used it it has worked very well.

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  13. Kudos on the mobile app.

    As a former Wisconsinite, I can not only say that the UWCU web experience is top-notch, but it's actually possible to do literally everything through it. I've been well out of the service area for almost 4 years... And manage all my money through the website, and even managed to finance 2 cars all through the website!

    First using Bank by Mail, and later setting up a checking account at a local CU (for deposits then transfer) and setting it up as an external account, managing all my stuff is a snap. And I do 95% of everything from my phone, which really speaks highly of the functionality of the site.

    Keep up the stellar work!!

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  14. Wanted to chime in with the rest of the group, fantastic website and now that i've begun to use the mobile site, I'm satisfied with that as well.

    Really great to bank with you guys, keep up the good work!

    -Brandon

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  15. What about something designed for a tablet? The full site can be frustrating to use on a tablet (not touchscreen friendly) and the mobile site is limited.

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  16. Yes, we realize the full site isn't as tablet friendly as it could be. We hope to improve it next year.

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  17. The mobile site works very well for me. I agree that it is almost app like and I will echo the thought that the mobile check deposit would be great.

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  18. What would be great about having an app is a couple things.

    1. Auto login, so i can just pop in via an app link to see my information/transfer money or whatever. The #1 thing i do with the mobile app is transfer balances, would be nice if the process could be more streamlined. Having an app would also dramatically improve performance as you would only have to transfer json back and forth, which is nice, particularly with the data caps and such

    2. In app alerts. I know you can do email alerts and such, but it would be nice if you could have some mobile app specific alerts, like balance alerts, etc.

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  19. Please make an app. I understand you have the mobile site for cell phones but it is much slower to have to use the web browser in comparison to a fully functunal app. I would also like to have access to check deposit on the app, waiting 7 days would be worth it especially with not having a branch close to me.
    Thanks and keep up the good work! When is the Waukesha Branch going to open?

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    Replies
    1. We'll be evaluating our options for mobile check deposits later this year.

      The Waukesha branch opens this spring (April/May).

      Delete
  20. Mobile Webbranch doesn't work when using the new Chrome Beta on Android 4.0, I get redirected to an error page stating "Page Not Found". It works with the stock browser, but as Chrome is most likely going to become the default browser on Android 4.0 and on, this needs to be resolved.

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    1. We don't generally support beta browsers. More times than not, the issue is with the browser and not our code. Once Chrome on Android is out of beta, we'll address any issues with our site if necessary.

      Thanks for letting us know. We'll be sure to keep an eye on it.

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  21. Broken record here...please make mobile check deposit a high priority. I use it with another CU and deposits clear in 3-5 days (normally 3).

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  22. I agree with the comments above urging you to make mobile check deposit available. I have this with my Schwab account (no 7 day wait for deposits to clear). It works great with the phone camera and I use it a lot. I'd rather be depositing my money in my UWCU account, but it is just not convenient for me to get to a branch.

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  23. Also what about an app or banking app for android phone so you can just log in and see accounts that way?? I have it with a credit card and another bank I use, very handy.

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  24. Echoing earlier comments is my strong recommendation for mobile check deposit. I understand there may be technical or security difficulties, but it is really useful, particularly as I have moved out of Wisconsin but still want to keep banking with UW Credit Union since it is so good (esp. so after comparing with banks in where I live now). I have tried the mobile deposit feature on Fidelity, and it works really nice. I hope the great software engineers at UWCU can figure out a wonderful solution so that I won't need to switch bank at all!

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  25. The mobile banking system was what brought me to UWCU. It's above par. I think mobile check deposit should be the next priority, not an app, given the number of members who don't live near a branch. Really, what's the difference between an app and the mobile site? Two clicks? Is that really worth the cost of setting up the app? Maybe you all don't realize the cost of building a really good, secure app. I would suggest that the tens of thousands of dollars that would end up being spent developing and maintaining apps (android and iPhone both) could be better used in other ways...

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Dani. That is our assessment as well. Creating an app (actually at least 3--Android, iPhone, iPad) isn't terribly difficult. However, maintaining and supporting them for many years is. We don't believe in doing anything unless the experience can be very high quality and work as promised. Our mobile site does things that aren't available in most mobile apps--like pending items and money management tools--so we'd prefer to continue to develop our mobile web app.

      We are again doing research on mobile check deposit. We plan to offer it eventually. However, despite how many financials do offer it now, it is still relatively untested technology.

      Delete
  26. You have to either open a branch in NW WI, or get this check deposit app going as soon as possible. I love UWCU and can do everything with you but deposit checks now that I have moved away from Madison. I now have to consider leaving UWCU which would make me sad.

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  27. If it helps to hear the same thing, over and over - I agree with pushing forward on the mobile check deposit. I too have moved from the area, and don't want to give up my UWCU account - but it is really a hassle depositing checks. Seven-day wait is not a problem!

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    Replies
    1. We are actively working on mobile check deposits. It is not a matter of if we will offer it, but when. There are a number of technical issues to work through and we want our offering to be the best. We will also beat 7 days for availability of funds. Please continue to be patient!

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  28. I'm another customer that needs mobile check deposit. I have several accounts with you and I've been very happy so far. The innovation put into the mobile website and online banking features has been great. But without this feature I'm forced to consider leaving as well. I hope you can at least release a timeframe for an expected release date soon, this would tide me over. I also second the notion that seven days is not a problem if it meant that this could happen sooner.

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  29. Do you plan to have your mobile app available on iPad?

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    1. That's hard to say right now. We are more focused on small mobile devices. I will say that we plan to update the main Web Branch site to work better on tablets next year. For the most part, Web Branch works fine on an iPad, but there are a few things that don't work well or at all. We are hoping to make a lot of progress in 2013 to improve our mobile services.

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  30. I would also like to advocate for mobile check deposits. i left college a couple of years ago and i would like to move all of my money to my UWCU account, but i can't do that because there isn't a location conveniently located. mobile check deposits would make my choice a no brainer.

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  31. It's really ridiculous that we still have to deal with paper checks. They've been as obsolete as typewriters for at least 15 years. Unfortunately we have to integrate with the rest of the archaic U.S. banking system.

    I live outside of Wisconsin as well, but can't see myself moving my accounts unless the service dramatically changes. UWCU is so far ahead of most other institutions. Dropping checks in the mailbox is easier than taking them to a local branch anyway.

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  32. Well I 2nd (or is that 50th?) the suggestions for a mobile app and photo check depositing. I remember calling about 4 years ago and speaking to someone about this. I am glad to see that things are going forward. Though my banking experience has been exemplary with UWCU this would make it MUCH MUCH MUCH improved. . . especially since I am not in Wisconsin (or even the country for that matter) any longer.

    By the way, if you want a beta tester (iPhone 4 and iPad 2 running the latest version of iOS) I am ready, willing and able!

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    Replies
    1. We are currently working on an app with mobile check deposits. Stay tuned for more information!

      Delete

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