Interactive Brokers on the go: test of mobile API begins

US retail FX giant Interactive Brokers (NASDAQ:IBKR) has maintained an intriguing silence with regard to its software development front during the last few months, however that calm was broken on Friday with the company having announced a series of new innovations, with a particular focus on the mobile trading front.

The broker says it has started beta testing a mobile application programming interface (API), which will allow third-party developers to program mobile apps that can be used on Interactive Brokers accounts. The company invites anyone who is eager to participate in the beta testing to establish contact via a dedicated email address which is [email protected]. This project will be particularly interesting to those who already use third-party offerings on the TWS platform and would like to use such apps in a mobile environment. Additionally, this particular development will likely appeal to third-party developers.

The launch of the mobile API testing arrives on the market during a period in which the firm is engaging in a wider drive towards enhancements in providing a comprehensive trading environment from mobile platforms. The broker already offers a set of applications for trading on the go on TWS. There are apps for iOS, Android and Blackberry devices, with the newest release for the latter having been available since 2011. There is also the MobileTrader app that works on any gadget that works via wireless Internet. This app is the simplest of all in terms of its functionality but Interactive Brokers is currently offering users of all devices that support Javascript to consider a beta version of the app with some enhanced capabilities.

The apps for iOS and Android-based gadgets have undergone a substantial update in the summer: since the end of August both apps support a range of new order types, like Market on Close, Limit on Close, Market if Touched, Limit if Touched, Market with Protection and Stop with Protection.

Another product for mobile devices that Interactive Brokers offers to its clients is mobileAM (account management), which enables owners of TWS accounts to view their account and position summaries and 30-day transaction history, as well as check out their activity statements. In addition, they can request deposits, withdrawals and position transfers. A big advantage of mobileAM is that it is HTML-based, so no download of extra software is necessary.

The emphasis that IB puts on mobile trading is not without rationale, as the passion for trading on the go and novel gadgets continues to enjoy enormous popularity among traders. Mobile apps help increase engagement of existing clients of brokers, as well as attract new ones from the growing group of mobile-tech fans.

For the full communique by Interactive Brokers, click here.

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