HSBC app review

HSBC's mobile banking app provides a variety of eye-catching features, including mobile cheque deposits, a digital secure key and the option to pay for online transactions using the app.

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Dating back to the 19th century, the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (or HSBC for short) is something of a household name – in 2018, it was the 7th largest bank in the world. But how does it fare in the emerging digital banking market? We’ve taken a look at HSBC’s mobile banking app to see how it compares to its peers.

If you’re not an HSBC customer, have a read of our other app reviews to find a banking app better suited to your needs.

How does the HSBC app work?

If you’re an HSBC customer, you can use its mobile app to do your banking. To get going with the app, all you need is your online banking login details – and if you haven’t already set up online banking you can do so in the app itself, by tapping “register for mobile and online banking” from the app’s main menu. Once you’re in your account, you can use the app to:

  • Pay in cheques.
  • Download and view your bank statements.
  • Set up, manage and cancel standing orders.
  • Temporarily block your card if you misplace it or it’s stolen.
  • Make easy transfers.
  • Stop cheques from being cashed if they haven’t been already.
  • Make payments using the Pay by Bank app.
  • Secure your account using the digital secure key feature.
  • If you forget your PIN, you can view it in the app.

How do I apply for a current or savings account with HSBC?

The easiest way to apply to open a new account with HSBC is online. Go to the HSBC website to open a savings account, a sole or joint current account, or switch your existing current account to HSBC.

HSBC fees and limits

As with most other banks, with HSBC you’ll incur fees for arranged and unarranged overdrafts, making international transfers and using your card abroad.

Saving with the HSBC app

HSBC’s mobile banking app doesn’t have a budgeting feature, however HSBC’s other app, the “Connected Money” app does. With this app, you can view all of your bank accounts, regardless of what bank they’re with, in one place. Though still in its beta phase, the app boasts a fair few features. These include the “spending insights” feature, which offers the user a breakdown of their spending in categories, echoing other apps with a similar capacity. There’s also a “balance after bills” feature, showing you how much money you have left after paying bills, and also a savings feature which will round up transactions and put the difference into a savings account. You can read our full review of HSBC’s “Connected Money” app here.

Investing with the HSBC app

It’s now possible to start investing through the HSBC mobile banking app. Customers can set up a Global Investment Centre account through the app and choose from 10 ready-made HSBC global strategy portfolios that come with different risk ratings. This includes five sustainable fund portfolios, which aim to invest more in companies with a higher ESG score average and a lower carbon footprint than the market. The minimum investment amount for HSBC customers is £50 per month or a lump sum of £1,000.

All investing should be regarded as longer term. The value of your investments can go up and down, and you may get back less than you invest. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. If you’re not sure which investments are right for you, please seek out a financial adviser. Capital at risk.

Is HSBC safe?

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) is an independent statutory fund set up to safeguard consumer finances in the event of a bank being unable to meet its payment demands. HSBC has full FSCS protection, which provides compensation for the loss of up to £85,000 – as is the standard for UK bank accounts.

Pros and cons of the HSBC mobile banking app


  • Get full access to a current and savings account – you can receive your salary, make direct debit payments and bank transfers.
  • Freeze your account if your credit or debit card is lost – then unfreeze it if it’s found.
  • Sign up for mobile banking on your smartphone.
  • See your balance without having to sign in to the app.
  • Access a broad network of bank branches if something goes wrong.


  • No budgeting feature within the mobile banking app itself.

Our verdict

The HSBC app offers account holders a wide variety of useful services at the touch of a button. These include the ability to temporarily block or freeze your card if it is stolen and pay in cheques.

While the app itself doesn’t contain any real budgeting features, the accompanying “Connected Money” app does offer these. The app uses Open Banking technology to show you all your banking transactions in one place, regardless of which bank your accounts are with, alongside a “spending insights” feature showing a breakdown of your spending in different categories.

Frequently asked questions

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