SingTel and Standard Chartered Bank have come together to launch Dash, a new mobile banking service, for Singapore smartphone users (currently, limited to Android and iOS users).

Dash — the app — works like a savings account, which opens up an m-wallet account with Standard Chartered. Smartphone users, irrespective of the telecom service provider they are subscribed to, can transfer money from any bank account to their Dash account and subsequently use it to make payments at stores, pay cab fares, and make peer-to-peer money transfers. However, there is a cap of S$999 (US$795) on payments and transfers.

Users can also make loan applications (up to 4X monthly salary or maximum of S$200,000 (US$159,000) through Dash and buy travel insurance. For the latter, SingTel has partnered with ACE Insurance.

According to Allen Lew, CEO Group Digital Life, SingTel, Dash is a suite of mobile money services which integrates three important components — mobile banking, mobile payments and mobile shopping. “Dash is centred around the lifestyle needs and habits of a mobile internet generation who is used to downloading information and content on the go.  With Dash, we are offering them an unprecedented experience by allowing cash to be downloaded (read ‘transferred’) into their phones as well,” he said.

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Som Subroto, Regional Head of Retail Clients – ASEAN, Standard Chartered added, ”As device sophistication and network speed have increased over the years, so have consumers’ expectations of usability and service. We are delighted to have this opportunity to collaborate with SingTel, to conceptualise Dash and make banking even more convenient and relevant for everyone.”

SingTel and Standard Chartered hope to extend the service to 20,000 acceptance points island-wide, including retail outlets, convenience stores, food courts and cafes, by the end of this year. To start with, Dash payments will be accepted at 7-Eleven, ComfortDelGro Taxis, Food Republic, KFC, Koi Cafe, Pizza Hut, Prime Taxi, SingTel canteens and lobby cafe, SingTel Shop, SMRT Taxi, Sodexo, Spineli, Watsons and WingTai Retail.

As a limited promotion, users will receive a complementary credit of S$10 (US$8) on sign-up. Dash is also encouraging users to spread the buzz on social media using a #needsanupdate hashtag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts. The interest rate of Dash Easy Savings Account holders will be bumped up to one per cent per annum on 10,000 #needsanupdate posts.

Unlike other saving accounts, there is no minimum initial deposit, minimum balance, fall-below fee or lock-in period.

SingTel also has M-Cash app, which allows storage of money and mobile payments. However, it has limited acceptability and top-ups too are limited to some retail outlets.