Online banking, no PC required
It could be another blow to the PC world. Scotiabank and Rogers Cable will offer Canadian subscribers an online banking method that doesn't require a PC.
Subs have banking and brokerage information as well as Internet, e-mail and online shopping access through their TVs. A wireless keyboard lets Scotiabank customers flip between watching TV and surfing to reconciling statements and more via a customized Scotiabank menu. Ontario residents and customers of Rogers interactive TV will be the first to receive the service. According to Scotiabank, almost 50 percent of Canadian households don't have Internet access.
"Interactive TV is a premium service and Scotiabank's online banking is offered free to those who subscribe to that premium service," Michael Lee, vice president and general manager, Rogers Interactive Services, tells CED.
The premium service is priced at $19.95 Canadian.
Subscribers in Ontario are on a Scientific-Atlanta platform, while most of the remainder of Roger's subscribers are on a General Instruments (now Motorola) platform. Rogers is currently evaluating the technology to format it for the G-I platform and make a consistent product offering, including the online banking, for its other customers, says Lee.
"Rogers is actively pursuing many customer products to be delivered over TV that we believe don't exist on a PC," says Lee.