The bane of many people is the paper check. Why can't the payer at least use PayPal, right? USAA is about to introduce an iPhone app that will end that hassle once and for all.
USAA is a financial services organization which includes banking, insurance, and other services. It launched an iPhone app in May to allows users to access accounts and more, and is planning to add a feature to the app that will allow check deposit
A customer photographs both sides of the check with the phone’s camera, then hits "Send" at which time the check will enter their check deposit system just as any other transaction would. To reduce fraud risk, only customers who are eligible for credit and have some type of insurance through USAA will be permitted to use the deposit feature. That would be about 60% of the bank’s customers, according to the report.
It's unclear how competitive their insurance rates are, but their savings rates are pretty low. It's 0.9%, and that's easily beaten at many other Internet banks. USAA has just one brick-and-mortar branch, in San Antonio, TX, and serves mostly military personnel, though most products are available to all. It does, however, have customers around the world, particularly when you think of military customers.
USAA also plans to port the app to other cell phone platforms.
This is great, for the occasional time when someone slips you a real check, rather than an electronic transfer or PayPal. It would be even better if the big banks would start to get with it, mobility-wise, though it's interesting to see someone at least trailblazing our way out of having to go to the bank for anything besides an ATM withdrawal.