The Future of UX in Banking

Virtual reality, voice recognition, artificial intelligence, augmented reality: these are the technologies that are set to change the way we interact with each other and in business. They are the way of the future, a future not that far away.  They will have a huge impact and are already making their mark.


This is especially true in financial services where they promise to make the user experience richer, more efficient, more effective and more convenient. Barclays recently introduced voice recognition software for phone customers, cutting out the need for multiple security questions and passwords. Meanwhile, Santander has an app that allows customers to voice questions about their transaction history rather than have to search manually for the data. The result is speedy access that can’t be matched in branch.

Finding the right use for the technology is all it takes. You probably aren’t going to want to be told your account balance in front of your children or parents, for example. But voice control is ideal when banking blends into the background of everyday life – buying lunch, booking theatre, train or bus tickets, or paying bills.

Not sure if it’s your mother’s birthday next week? Ask your phone to check your diary, get the date, find a local florist, choose some flowers, look up her address, check your balance to see if you can afford them, pay for them, get a receipt, know they’ve been sent, get your new balance. All by talking to your phone.

There are already hundreds of thousands of developers working to plug in new voice driven services to make our lives easier, and many will have a financial or banking element. Banks are also on the case. At least 10 around the world have launched chatbot services in the past three months alone as adoption moves from the early to the fast follower stage. Mass market will depend on how quickly the analytics mature to make the interactions truly smart.

The successful ones will be those that add value to the users – the customers, us. This means banks need to make sure they are looking beyond banking. It’s about the role they will play in the background. Successful banks will enhance their services and role by pushing analytics further and become data generators rather than data capturers, and from this they will provide value-added services.

When banks collect and analyse data they can do so much more. Combined with artificial intelligence, and augmented and virtually reality, banks will be able to help customers manage their money so much better.

I love the idea of a VR meeting where a customer’s total assets and commitments can be clearly set out. Advisers can come in to offer suggestions about making the income and assets sweat, according to the customer’s risk appetite. Does it make sense to release some equity in a house to invest in a higher yielding product? Would buying a cheaper insurance policy with a higher excess rate make more sense as the customer’s claims are historically low? Not only would the bank be offering advice, the connections and inter-relationships between it and third parties mean it would be able to affect any changes. The more data across the population a bank has, the smarter the system can be, the better the advice it will be able to give.

Perhaps the most exciting prospect in all this is augmented reality. Shopping, you pick up an item and the screen you’re wearing gives you availability, reviews, the best deal, and compares alternatives. You can access finance, order, and pay. It’s not just going to be glasses that can do this; Google Lens is already patent-applied; VR systems will get there; car windscreens; school whiteboards. This is going to be really powerful from a user perspective.

Together these technological advances have all been termed the Fourth Industrial Revolution. It has arrived and its impact is being felt. The banking sector might think it has a choice. It really doesn’t. Their customers have seen the future and are demanding it today.

One Response to “The Future of UX in Banking”

  1. Chaitanya kandula Says:

    I like this article and scope of enhancing the UX . I can’t even think the sort of change that AI is going to bring in banking. Looking for more articles on AI.

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