Bank of America's official Android app has been able to cash checks by taking photos of them for the last few years. It's an extremely useful feature that eliminates one of the last common reasons to stand in a teller line. It's also bloody frustrating, at least with Bank of America's implementation - I'm a customer, and I've often had to find a solid black backdrop and a couple of table lamps just to make the photo clear enough for BofA's strangely picky system.
As a Bank of America customer for almost ten years, I can give you a lot of reasons to hate them. But I must admit that the Android app isn't one. While initially a little shaky, the app has gently evolved into something that's perfectly serviceable, and today it gets another substantial update. The biggest addition is the ability to send or receive money through email addresses or phone numbers. Yes, that's exactly how PayPal works, but if you do it via BOFA, you won't have to wait 2-3 business days for another transfer.
While Google and the ISIS consortium duke it out over the future of Near Field Communication and the payment systems that use it, one of the largest financial institutions in the US had decided to ignore it. Reuters reports that Bank Of America is testing a new system that will only require retailers to display a single image. Ideally this would negate the need for new hardware for both sellers and buyers - all that's required is an Android or iOS device with a camera and a mobile connection.
My fellow Bank of America customers, lend me your ears! No longer do you need to sit in embarrassed silence as Chase Bank and PayPal users show off the ability to deposit checks magically through their smartphones. Now you too can revel in the futuristic technology of 2011, having waited only a year for the largest banking institution in the country to update its Android app in line with non government-subsidized competitors.
If you own an Android 3.0+ tablet, then you're probably always on the lookout for tablet-optimized apps. If you also happen to be a Bank of America customer, then here's a new app that you'll probably want to hit the "install" button on right away: the official Bank of America for Tablet app.
Not only does the app take advantage of the larger display of a tablet, but it also allows you to pay your bills and transfer funds, check your account balances, and find ATM and bank locations using GPS, all in a tidy and secure package.