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U.S. Bancorp (USB - Analyst Report) unveiled an android-compatible credit card application, REI Visa app, for the consumers of Recreational Equipment, Inc.The application is similar to the one launched by US Bancorp for iPhones back in October. U.S. Bank plans to continue rolling out this application to its co-branded partners throughout 2012.

The new application enables the consumers to apply for and receive on-the-spot credit for making purchases. This sort of application will enhance consumers’ convenience and provide them with spontaneous buying power.

This newly designed virtual credit card will contain all information required to be furnished at the time of making purchases. Moreover, it will enable access to account management tools such as balance viewing, latest transactions as well as making payments, at any given point of time. Further, it will provide an access to a link of REI‘s website for online shopping.

US Bancorp was amongst the first to introduce mobile application for credit cards. The initial applications were designed exclusively to support iPhones. This revolutionary application will expand the bank’s exposure in the mobile banking arena.

Besides this virtual credit card application for mobile phones, the bank has also launched an iPad banking application built on the Mobiliti Enterprise, a mobile banking and payments platform from Fiserv, to cater to the growing needs of tablet users.

Further, the bank designed and is upgrading an application, which is compatible to iPhones, known as Find US+. The application provides a street view of the bank’s branches and ATM’s employing the mobile device’s camera

From the view point of Recreational, the virtual credit card offers opportunities to take the consumer relationship to a whole new level by providing easy access to credit facilities.

Similar offerings by other banks

Recently, Waddell & Reed Financial Inc. (WDR - Analyst Report) introduced a new mobile banking service - Send & Receive Money - to make things easier for the bank’s customers to transfer funds to other banks using their mobile phones.

Similarly, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM - Analyst Report) offered a new mobile application to its customers. This application allows customers to deposit checks via their mobile phones and save a lot of time.

Conclusion

US Bancorp has been a pioneer in innovating faster means of funds transfer. It has been able to perceive correctly the immeasurable significance of technology in the modern-day banking. In this way, it is constantly devising newer applications compatible to mobile phones and tablets to simplify banking for an average consumer. With such actions the bank will surely be able to satisfy its customers and play a major role in improving the general banking scenario as a whole.

US Bancorp currently retains a Zacks #2 Rank, which translates into a short-term Buy rating. Considering the fundamentals, we also maintain a long-term Outperform recommendation on the stock.

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