Voice banking is poised to have a significant impact on the future of banking. Incumbent banks, challengers, the tech giants, fintechs, and startups are already competing to attract and retain customers within their voice-powered ecosystems.
What is voice banking?
Voice banking is a process that provides a person with voice management for all everyday banking operations.
The winners in this latest financial services frontier will be those that leverage modern technology to realize the potential of voice payments technology..
Voice banking is evolving
ING was among the first banks to introduce a voice control function to its app back in 2014, which used Nuance’s voice-recognition software to launch Inge, the assistant. Customers could also find the nearest branch and pay their contacts. Other banks quickly followed suit. Some chose to launch their proprietary digital assistants and chatbots, while others integrated their services with Siri, Google, and Alexa.
Bank of America released their AI-empowered digital assistant called Erica in 2016 to facilitate voice payments. Eighteen months after launch, the platform attracted 10 million customers and handled 100 million requests from them. Erica can handle voice, text, and gesture commands to make transfers, list transactions, and provide guidance by analyzing consumer habits.
Erica has successfully helped Bank of America gain insights into what their customers want from a voice banking assistant. Simultaneously, they used the data gathered from voice requests to personalize their digital services and provide a better banking experience.
Capital One created a voice interaction service that uses Alexa to help consumers make credit card payments, check account balances, and get a snapshot of their spending habits. Barclays chose to integrate with Siri instead. The bank’s customers can pay existing payees or mobile contacts without opening the banking app or inputting passwords, immensely speeding pay simple transactions.
Venmo, Square Cash, and PayPal have also joined the ranks of financial companies that support voice payments.
Research by Strategy& shows that voice banking technology can be applied across both the front and back office to free up line branch staff, reduce call center call volume, and minimize operations. By addressing these key points, banks could gain 15% to 35% in efficiency across the value chain.
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