The mobile bank of the Unicredit group allows you to open and manage a current account exclusively from your iPhone. Here's how it works
All banking institutions (or almost all) offer their customers a mobile banking service to access their current account and manage it as if you were in front of an employee, inside a branch. Thanks to the bank's app, it will be possible to check the balance, make transfers, pay bills and F24 online.
So far, however, no one (at least in Italy) has ever enclosed all the functions only in the app, completely "dematerializing" the bank counters and enclosing them within the customer's smartphone. This is the case of Buddybank, the Unicredit group's mobile bank, accessible only via smartphone (there is no home banking portal accessible via web browser). An all-Italian product, therefore, aimed at a very young audience. Let's see what exactly Buddybank is, how it works and what its costs are.
What is Buddybank
The service created by Unicredit in 2016 differs from the rest of the online banks because the only "access point" is through the smartphone. Indeed, to be more precise Buddybank works only on iPhone. For the rest, it is a fully fledged online current account (with Italian IBAN), which allows the user to carry out any operation he/she wishes: make bank transfers, pay bills (also by direct debit), pay F24 online, manage credit and debit cards and much more.
To these are added other services that a "normal" bank is not used to offering, such as a "personal" concierge ready to help customers 24/7 in any situation they find themselves. There is also a "conversational" approach, more similar to that of an instant messaging app than that of a "usual" mobile lack.
How Buddybank works
To be able to create an online current account with Buddybank you need an iPhone with iOS 10 or higher. Therefore, those who have an old apple phone will not be able to open the free account of Buddybank. If you meet the minimum technical requirements, you will be able to open the account in a matter of minutes: after downloading the app, just follow the guided procedure during which you will be asked to enter your personal data (such as name, surname, town and date of birth, residence) and send an image of your tax code and a valid identity document, so that the auditors of the banking service can ensure that the data correspond to the truth. Before the conclusion of the procedure we will be asked whether the debit card linked to the free account of Buddybank should be sent to the address of residence or another address.
Once the account is activated, it will be completely (and solely, it is worth remembering) manageable through your iPhone. On the main screen, you will see the current account balance and buttons/icons for one-touch access to Buddybank's main features. Just below the central "banner" there are buttons to access the area Payments and to Withdraw money from your balance.
From the Payments section, for example, it will be possible to make bank transfers to Italian, European or non-European IBANs; to pay F24 forms online, to pay car, energy, gas and water bills or to make a phone top-up.
Further down, instead, we find the area dedicated to the management of the cards linked to your account. Al momento dell’iscrizione, come detto, verrà chiesto dove spedire la carta di debito Mastercard abbinata “di default", mentre in un secondo momento si potrà richiedere una carta di credito Word Elite Mastercard. Le carte Buddybank possono essere utilizzate per pagamenti online, per pagare nei punti vendita che accettano carte Mastercard e prelevare dagli sportelli Bancomat di tutto il mondo. Inoltre, sono compatibili con Apple Pay, consentendovi così di pagare direttamente con lo smartphone.
Quanto costa Buddybank
La mobile ban di Unicredit consente di scegliere tra due diversi profili: il primo gratuito, il secondo a pagamento.
Il conto Buddybank Base, che non prevede alcun canone mensile, comprende:
- Carta di debito internazionale del circuito Mastercard;
- Bonifici SEPA ordinari gratuiti;
- Nessuna commissione per prelievi da ATM del gruppo Unicredit in tutto il mondo;
- Servizio concierge bancario 24 ore su 24
In alternativa, è possible aprire il conto Buddybank Love che, al costo di 9,90 euro al mese (in offerta per chi apre il conto fino al 31 dicembre 2020) aggiunge ai servizi del conto base anche:
- Carta di credito World Elite Mastercard in lega metallica;
- Prelievi bancomat gratuiti in tutto il mondo;
- Bonifici istantanei gratis;
- Servizio di concierge lifestyle gestito dal team di Quintessentially.
Come ricaricare Buddybank
Trattandosi di un conto corrente a tutti gli effetti, Buddybank potrà essere ricaricato con un bonifico da un qualsiasi altro conto corrente. Sarà sufficiente fornire il codice IBAN associato al proprio conto e attendere che ci venga accreditata la cifra. Alternatively, you can recharge Buddybank in cash by going to one of the ATMs of the Unicredit group and follow the procedure on the screen.