Atom bank is one of the “challenger banks”“ aiming to bring banking into the present. Atom works entirely through your smartphone or tablet, making banking more streamlined and accessible. However, unlike many of its competitors, Atom offers savings accounts and mortgages rather than simply current accounts.
This review will look at Atom’s app and its Fixed Savers product, if you’re interested in Atom’s mortgages then we have a review for that too.
What is Atom bank?
Atom attracts customers with value for money and convenience. It believes its small pool of products and promise of trustworthiness should be enough for customers to make the right choice.
How does Atom bank work?
Completely through an app on your tablet or smartphone. It doesn’t even send a card, you just move your money via bank transfers.
Atom makes the app personal to you, giving the option to alter your brand, theme and the name of your account. The design focusses on the products offered by Atom, with added extras like a blog and videos about the company.
The basic app functions include:
- Your savings: See how much money you have saved, and how much money you will earn through interest. Your interest rates are also displayed on screen.
- Our products: Atom offers a small pool of different savings accounts, as well as mortgages at a competitive rate. From the products screen you can select or apply for one of these options.
- Your mortgage: If you have opened a mortgage with Atom, an option to view your repayments becomes available on screen. This will let you know how much and when you need to pay back your loan. Read our Atom bank mortgage review to learn more.
The app also features:
- Blog: Atom’s blog, “Atomised”, is updated monthly and discusses a variety of current topics within banking and society.
- Videos: A video on Atom bank’s story so far and a video on security can be found on the app home page.
- Daily quote: Atom provides customers with a daily quote for anyone who wants to be inspired.
Fees and limits
With Atom you can open a savings account lasting up to five years. Interest rates vary depending on the saving period and the type of interest chosen.
Annual equivalent rates are competitive:
|Product||Interest Type||Rates (Gross)||Rates (AER)|
|3 Month Fixed Saver||Annual interest||0.75%||0.75%|
|3 Month Fixed Saver (monthly interest)||Monthly interest||0.75%||0.75%|
|6 Month Fixed Saver||Annual interest||0.75%||0.75%|
|6 Month Fixed Saver (monthly interest)||Monthly interest||0.75%||0.75%|
|1 Year Fixed Saver||Annual interest||1.50%||1.50%|
|1 Year Fixed Saver (monthly interest)||Monthly interest||1.49%||1.50%|
|2 Year Fixed Saver||Annual interest||1.50%||1.50%|
|2 Year Fixed Saver (monthly interest)||Monthly interest||1.49%||1.50%|
|3 Year Fixed Saver||Annual interest||1.50%||1.50%|
|3 Year Fixed Saver (monthly interest)||Monthly interest||1.49%||1.50%|
|5 Year Fixed Saver||Annual interest||1.50%||1.50%|
|5 Year Fixed Saver (monthly interest)||Monthly interest||1.49%||1.50%|
There are no withdrawals on the account until it has matured, and day-to-day payments cannot be made so there are no fees.
How safe is Atom bank?
You might also have concerns about the bank’s day-to-day security features – how effective is the bank at stopping fraud?
Well, it offers broadly the same security features as a traditional banking app. Instead of using the standard passcode and password combination, Atom bank uses face and voice recognition to keep your money safe. The Atom app asks for a selfie and voice clip when logging in.
Along with your personal details and address Atom also requests your existing bank details when registering with them.
Can Atom bank be used abroad?
Pros and cons of Atom bank
- Register in under 30 minutes.
- Display of account balance and interest rates, as well as how much you will get back at the end of the saving period.
- Display of your possible returns encourages you to save.
- Competitive rates of AER and tax-free interest up to £1000.
- Personalised bank account.
- Choose how long you want to save for.
- Tough security to keep your money safe.
- FCA and PRA certified.
- Security features often take multiple tries to work.
- Atom asks for a lot of information from you.
- No bank card issued.
- Traditional banks are still necessary for full money management.
Atom Bank has a good range of fixed rate savings accounts, the set up is fairly quick and the rates are competitive (although not always the top of the market). You can choose how long the account lasts for and whether to get interest paid monthly or annually.
Just keep in mind that once you deposit your money, you won’t be able to get it back until the account expires – Atom has no “cooling off” period, so think carefully before opening an account. Also, it’s just fixed-rate savings accounts, no easy access accounts or regular savers available.
You can open an account with as little as £50 and still get Atom’s best rates. Together with its flexibility and easy setup, this makes Atom a competitive option for small savers who want to grow their stash without touching it for a while.
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