HSBC’s branches in the UK will have free wi-fi connection as part of the bank’s effort to encourage customers to manage their accounts on smartphones. Some 650 hotspots will help customers download and use the bank’s app, and start making payments by phone. However, security experts have warned users of public wi-fi to be careful. HSBC’s move comes after Barclays launched free wi-fi in its 1,600 branches early last year. HSBC said more customers were asking about how to bank on the move. Easy internet access will make branches more useful, it said. In particular, the bank plans to demonstrate the new Paym service, which will allow customers of most major banks to pay friends and businesses using just a mobile phone number.