Atom won the initial PR round, a couple of years ago when fintech was in its infancy. No one else had heard of Tandem, Mondo and Starling, and Atom got a lot of press precisely because it was a couple of guys from First Direct and Metro doing ‘a bank on a smartphone’.
Since then Atom have brought zero innovation to the sector. Yes they launched market-leading savings and mortgages, but their USP on the savings was being able to show you what interest you’d earn until you cashed it in, hardly rocket science with a fixed-term account. Their app is a UI nightmare as everyone knows, and no-one knows what will.i.am brings to the table; if Atom even know they’ve done nothing to tell the rest of the world.
They weren’t prepared for banking innovation regulations they must have know we’re being introduced, and I agree with the poster above when they commented it was probably conceived as a legacy bank through an app, a bit like B Bank.
But they’re great at PR. Woot!