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:
🔥 NEW SERVICE PILOT 🔥We're piloting voice technology that allows customers to ask basic banking questions through a Google Home smart speaker or smart phone. Customers will be able to ask questions like 'what's my balance?' and access banking tips. And it's secure, with access protected by a voice PIN only you can set up. We invited around 30,000 customers to register for the pilot and 500 have been chosen to start testing the service later this month, including 30 with a disability. We're not taking any more sign ups right now, but keep following us to find out about other technology we're trialling.
Posted by NatWest on Thursday, August 8, 2019
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.
Photo credit: The feature image is a still frame of a promotional video and is owned by NatWest / RBS.
Sources: RBS Press Room / Patrick Collinson (The Guardian) / Emma Lunn (Mortgage Solutions) / Drew Burns (Adobe Blog)