Big banks band together to introduce digital payment app Zelle

The new competitor to Venmo?

More than 30 financial institutions are working together to transform the world of person-to-person payments by participating in the new payment system Zelle

The new person-to-person payments network from bank-owned Early Warning Services allows for funds to be sent from one bank account to another in minutes, using only a recipient’s email address or mobile number.

Zelle payments can be sent using only a registered email address or mobile number so that consumers never have to share their bank account information with another person or third-party app or service.

Starting this week, and continuing on a rolling basis over the next 12 months, Zelle will become available within mobile banking apps of more than 30 participating financial institutions.

The institutions include:

Ally Bank, Bank of America, Bank of Hawaii, Bank of the West, BB&T, BECU, Capital One, Citi, Citizens Bank, Comerica Bank, ConnectOne Bank, Dollar Bank, Fifth Third Bank, FirstBank, First Tech Federal Credit Union, First Tennessee Bank, First National Bank, Frederick County Bank, Frost Bank, HomeStreet Bank, JP Morgan Chase, KeyBank, M&T Bank, MB Financial Bank, Morgan Stanley, PNC Bank, SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union, Star One Credit Union, SunTrust Bank, TD Bank, USAA, U.S. Bank, and Wells Fargo.

Plus, Early Warning partnered with payment processors FIS, Fiserv, and Jack Henry & Associates, as well as card networks such as Mastercard to offer banks and credit unions multiple integration pathways onto the network.

Then over the next year, millions more consumers, including individuals at non-participating banks and credit unions, will experience Zelle through a standalone Zelle app. The app will be available for both iOS and Android mobile devices

Through the network of financial institutions, more than 86 million mobile banking consumers will be able to access Zelle through the mobile banking apps of Zelle Network partners.

“Fragmentation has been frustrating for consumers. Inconsistent experiences, have made it difficult to send and receive money between banks,” said Paul Finch, CEO of Early Warning Services. “Zelle unites the financial community behind a single, real-time P2P payments experience for millions of consumers. Together, we are removing friction from finance, allowing money to move seamlessly between accounts in minutes. This revolution in money movement will create for consumers a viable alternative to checks and cash.”

So far, a lot of early coverage of Zelle has compared it to peer-to-peer payment app Venmo, which, so far, has had a strong dominance in this space. Venmo created a unique spin on that standard financial transaction by turning it into “a social network that lets that add emojis, have a little fun and make transferring money less transactional,” Suman Bhattacharyya explaind in a Digiday article.

In Bhattacharyya’s article, “Why Zelle is more than just a Venmo clone,” it states:

Zelle has often been portrayed as the banks’ way to go after PayPal-owned Venmo. Recent headlines called Zelle’s launch a “war on Venmo,” or “Venmo killer.” But it may be just a sign that the peer-to-peer payment marketplace is now large enough to accommodate multiple players, including older customers who are less likely to post an emoji every time they’ve made good on their promise to repay a friend back a few dollars.

And, according to the article, it looks like Venmo welcomes the competition.

“The common enemy is cash, which makes up the majority of payments between friends today,” said spokesman Josh Criscoe. “There’s plenty of room for several more folks in the market, so we think that any additional folks that enter the market, we welcome it.”

Criscoe said Venmo has a loyal user base built on word-of-mouth recommendations and social sharing. While it can take 24 hours or more for money to transfer over Venmo, he said instances when people need the money immediately is more the exception than the norm. He added that PayPal’s recent partnerships with Visa and Mastercard will allow Venmo users instant access to funds later this year.

Most Popular Articles

Spouse of Quicken Loans executive sues AIME’s Anthony Casa for defamation

Theresa Niemiec, wife of Quicken Loans Executive Vice President Austin Niemiec, has filed a defamation lawsuit against Anthony Casa, CEO of the Association of Independent Mortgage Experts, for comments he made about her in a video message that he filmed and sent to her husband and others in the mortgage industry.

Jul 12, 2020 By
3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

Log In

Forgot Password?

Don't have an account? Please