Home Technology Gadgets NatWest Plans Pilot to Enable Voice Banking via Google Assistant

NatWest Plans Pilot to Enable Voice Banking via Google Assistant

Google Assistant is a fun tool to use when you want instant access to data to save time. And British bank NatWest wants you to bank on your voice to have such immediate access to your financial data.

On Monday, the bank has announced a new pilot scheme for its customers. The three-months long trial would initially be available to 500 customers only. They would be able to communicate with their Google Home smart speaker or smartphone about their financial details. The possible questions would include those about banking balance, recent transactions, pending transactions or contact details of the bank’s helpline.

Customers’ existing PIN code and online banking passwords would be the verification required to use the voice assistant. When prompted, a customer would provide a portion of their pin to confirm their identity.

The bank expects that the full-scale rollout of voice banking would follow after the trial is evaluated. Below is a demonstration of the bank’s prepared before the launch of the program:

https://www.facebook.com/NatWest/videos/1946880072123950/?__xts__%5B0%5D=68.ARDKqWv0UUuikTKDfv-v3kqmADQSkIVirUW4OapZ9WEzI9vPS47f9jRHs6OyGGdtQUpGqbSHd2qhiGQb-nKb2gLiqIJkH3Dl21PP1-1nt3ps6_7ytG_9eQ3_dOHalM-XSlsqbJIsWWlz_8mey1FmOUwLjgANsQy1_90Mj_jJeM0C0SrBPlUcRchGqveolMg9SQVHDoMEtI5KZiz-yYJP2QWLsF9zOHAVBTUa92xEsLvhEQgr2Jr5clLbjuf3j0WbYhh9rODCKHgodlVBKdjBxgAhyImrvJtou_w0ZzwyWWyplqRkPibWO4hZxMywt2y9oHGrVbjBSr7zQt30jFR0qIwMyobjnocaucx32g&__tn__=-R

A new chapter in banking services

Of course, having a voice assistant tell you the state of your account takes up less time than you actually checking it yourself. The possibility of hands-free service also makes mobile banking much more accessible for disabled customers. In addition, voice-based services add a touch of personalization, which is one of the biggest consumer trends today. The bank itself considers voice banking “the beginning of a major change to how customers manage their finances in the same way mobile banking made a huge impact,” according to the bank’s Head of Open Experience Kristen Bennie.

Indeed, NatWest seems to be capitalizing on trends really well, personalization and voice tech being the latest in line. It’s UK’s first bank to launch Touch ID for mobile banking, and it’s an industry leader with its use of AI (their digital assistant Cora). We hope that the Google Assistant pilot would indeed open up more exciting opportunities in FinTech, and set NatWest on the path of becoming a sector leader in terms of user experience.

Photo credit: The feature image is a still frame of a promotional video and is owned by NatWest / RBS.
Sources: RBS Press RoomPatrick Collinson (The Guardian) / Emma Lunn (Mortgage Solutions) / Drew Burns (Adobe Blog)

Kate Sukhanova
Kate Sukhanova
I’m a writer with a keen interest in digital technology and traveling. If I get to write about those two things at the same time, I’m the happiest person in the room. When I’m not scrolling through newsfeeds, traveling, or writing about it, I enjoy reading mystery novels, hanging out with my cat, and running my charity shop.

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