This story was originally published and last updated .
Paying and getting paid is easier than ever, but the various apps you can choose to transact with have their upsides and downsides. Picking one can be difficult, and signing up for all of them even more so — especially when it often means convincing friends and family to do so as well. But old school bank ACH transfer tools are for the birds, and cold, hard cash remains a dicey proposition in the current environment. Splitting the bill with cash is also just a pain, and newer peer to peer (P2P) payment apps are so much more convenient that it's truly silly in 2020 not to be using one.
Various US banks added support for money transfers via Zelle over the last few months, but support is far from universal. Zelle is now available to just about anyone in the US with its new mobile app. If you've got a debit card, odds are you can use Zelle to send money.
Another day, another Venmo competitor. This time we might actually have something worth looking at, though. Zelle — a payment network developed by Early Warning and built on top of ClearXchange — has been announced with integrated support for many different banks and their respective applications, including Wells Fargo, Bank of America, US Bank, CitiBank, and Chase (among a huge list of others). These days everyone seems to think they can edge out Venmo, but with bank integration, Zelle might actually be able to do it.
The Bank of America Android app had its material overhaul last year, so it already looks better than a ton of banking apps. However, today it's getting better, with the new ability to send, receive, or request money from almost anyone in your contacts.
Left: before. Right: after.
Previously, money could be sent, but it did not use your phone's address book, and requesting money was difficult. The new feature, however, uses your phone's address book to get emails of the person you want to send money to, or request money from. Sending money is pretty the same as before, or any other service, with the addition of it being able to use anyone of your contact list.