BOSTON (3/1/11)--Basic mobile banking, online account opening, mobile payments and remote deposit capture (RDC) are the top information technology (IT) ventures shaping the future of credit unions trying to leverage technology to meet their objectives, according to a new report. The report, from Aite Group, a Boston-based research firm, is based on an online survey of 83 U.S. credit unions during December and January. The report details a demand for more than 25 different technologies among those credit unions surveyed. Credit unions rated the likelihood of whether they would invest in certain categories of technologies. Basic mobile banking (check balances/transfer funds) drew 57% citing it as "high priority," followed by online account opening (47%), mobile payments (45%), RDC (41%) , consumer online banking application (36%), e-statements (34%), personal financial management tools (31%); small-business online banking application (28%); mobile person-to-person and RDC for business members (24% each), and member analytics/business intelligence tools, 18%. Technologies receiving a "probably will invest" was mobile person-to-person payments, with 28% citing this. None of the other categories received more than 23%. Credit unions have seen far fewer failures than their bank counterparts over the past few years, but have had to alter their strategies and business models to operate in "the new normal," said the 38-page report. "These institutions continue to be challenged by stringent regulatory requirements, declining loan portfolio balances, and rising losses associated with fraud," said Aite. "The role technology plays in credit union strategies has grown more critical than ever before as a way to overcome these challenges." Technologies will be used to attract new members, compete against larger institutions, and ensure future growth and success. Christine Barry, research director at Aite and author of the report, noted that "several opportunities exist for credit unions in the current marketplace. By leveraging technology such as the online and mobile channels, and moving toward new strategies, to better target small-business customers, for example, credit unions will be better positioned to take advantage of these opportunities," Barry added.