In our weekly news round-up, we highlight five news stories from across the banking and technology world. This week’s stories cover the possible tipping point to widespread cloud services adoption among banks and credit unions, the geographical influence on people who are shopping for new banks and credit unions and more.

Bank Technology News: Why Banks Are Finally Embracing Cloud Computing

Banks aren’t especially known to be early adopters when it comes to the latest trends in technology. Especially when there’s a perception that an institution’s valuable and sensitive data might be at risk of falling into someone else’s hands. So it’s not a huge surprise that financial institutions have been slow to take up cloud computing. That seems to be turning around, though, according to new data highlighted in this Bank Technology News article. Some 71% of bank executives are now looking to invest more in cloud technology, according to the report. For those banks that are still concerned about the implications these new services have on compliance, check out our recent eGuide, The 5-Minute Guide to Compliance in the Cloud.

BankNews: Streamlining Operations Through Virtualization

OK, we admit a little bias on this one, since it was written by Safe Systems president Darren Bridges. Regardless, this double case study in BankNews highlights how a pair of smaller financial institutions were able to effectively improve their IT support and dramatically increase their responsiveness to changing technology through virtualization. As we’ve said before, financial institutions live through their technology. However, the technology influencing enterprise IT changes faster than the pace at which many smaller financial institutions are able to keep up. We find that virtualization can make a big difference in enterprise efficiency and flexibility.

The Financial Brand: Bank Switchers, Branch Locations and ‘The Five-Mile Rule’

More than half of those searching for a new financial institution are looking for something close to home. Pulling data from Novarica’s FindABetterBank website, The Financial Brand writes that 51% of those switching banks want an institution with a branch that’s within five miles of where they live, and 26% on top of that want their local branch to be within 10 miles of home. 

Credit Union Times: Engaging Frontline Staff to Drive Mobile Banking Adoption

The popularity of smartphones and tablets has skyrocketed over the past several years. And for many people, their iPhone or Android device has become their primary gateway to the Internet and its many online services. And with that rise in mobile computing, many credit unions and banks have deployed some sort of mobile solution, either through an app or a mobile-optimized online banking site. Of course, the other half to the equation is getting members to adopt. This Credit Union Times article discusses several strategies on how the frontline staff of a branch can help promote mobile banking.

USA Today: Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 Update to Launch in October

The Start button is making its comeback in a couple months, when Microsoft releases its much-anticipated Windows 8.1 update, reports USA Today. The software giant fell under some criticism for the big leap it took with Windows 8, an attempt to marry the classic operating system with a modernized feel inspired by touchscreen interfaces. We’ve already documented the challenges in adopting Windows 8, and have examined the key differences between Windows 7 and Windows 8 for financial institutions still trying to migrate off of Windows XP. It’s yet to be determined how much a difference the new update to Windows will make, though it should bring back some key features from previous Microsoft operating systems that kept a good number of users from making the switch.

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