Santander ranked last for Open Banking speed among high street banks, Yapily data shows

By Aisling Finn on Monday 14 December 2020

Digital Banking

At the start of the year, the average API response time across all the high street banks was 1154ms, compared to 504ms now.

Santander ranked last for Open Banking speed among high street banks, Yapily data shows
Image source: Stefano Vaccino (centre)/Yapily.

Open banking provider Yapily has today exposed the range of open banking response times from highstreet banks by publishing a wealth of data on its own API response times.

Throughout the pandemic, it’s clear from the numbers that open banking rapidly became a top priority of most of the incumbent banks, with their average API response time improving from 1154ms in February to 504ms today.

Many high street banks are now reaching similar API speeds to their digital banking rivals, like Monzo for instance which had an average response time of 211ms in Yapily’s testing.

Fast API response times are important as they enable developers to create apps and services that react quickly and provide a better user experience.

The biggest improvement on the list came from First Direct, which had an average speed of 1577ms in February, compared to a much faster 604ms now.

First Direct was closely followed by M&S Bank which had an average response time of 1314ms in February, down to 632ms more recently. 

By far the worst on the list, however, was Santander. 

The Spanish bank had an average response time of 1502ms back in February, which has now been reduced down to 1008ms, nearly double the average response time of its high street banking rivals.

Stefano Vaccino, CEO and founder of Yapily, said: “With recent research from OBIE finding that 50 per cent of the UK’s small businesses are using services from open banking providers, having faster response times between banks and open banking partners are critical to deliver better services such as borrowing, accessing payments and more.”

“2020 was a difficult year for many. Open Banking is not only growing quickly, but it’s also being taken very seriously by traditional banks. And that’s shown by response times getting faster, indicating better connectivity.”

The fastest response time from a high street bank came from AIB, which currently has an average response time of 288ms, down from 991ms back in February.

NatWest and RBS follow closely in AIB’s footsteps with speeds of 331ms and 334ms respectively, a reduction of around 200ms for both banks.

Vaccino added: “As we head into 2021, we expect open banking to really come into its own, as financial institutions look to launch and connect with new services aimed at giving customers better control, greater security and an improved experience.”

HSBC had response times of just slightly above average, starting the year with speeds of 827ms, to now having a response time of 592ms.

This comes 18 months after alternative lender Growth Street accused HSBC of only having its open banking up and running 20 per cent of the time, a claim that the bank vehemently denied. 

Open banking is starting to break through to the mainstream more and more, with the Open Banking Implementation Entity (OBIE) revealing that open banking had doubled its user base to two million users in the UK in just six months.

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