UOB Announces AI-Based App That’ll Give Financial Advice Based on Your Spending Habits

UOB Announces AI-Based App That’ll Give Financial Advice Based on Your Spending Habits

by October 19, 2018

UOB Bank today announced the launch of its pan-regional engagement lab (eLab), with a goal of helping the bank converse with its consumers in a more personalised manner.

eLab is a dedicated unit set up by UOB that aims to use behavioural insights to deepen customer engagement. Beyond just its home turf Singapore, UOB will be setting up eLabs across its presences in other ASEAN countries—Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

In a banking world that is increasingly more user-centric and focused on customer experience, UOB will be utilising artificial intelligence to understand individuals based on their unique transaction patterns. The eLab team will be designing methods to encourage customers to save money, or spend more wisely through what the bank hopes are relevant, familiar and intuitive digital methods. UOB claims that these conversations will be in the customers’ mother tongue as a nod to ASEAN’s “cultural and linguistic diversity”.

The information and advice will be made available to users via an app.

UOB is currently in the midst of overhauling a lot of its customer-facing processes, from the onboarding process to the day-to-day banking, via next-generation digital capabilities.

This move into encouraging financial literacy via artificial intelligence in line with the global drive towards open banking. The inter-bank movement was spearheaded by the UK has now been adopted by regulators in the EU, and across the globe.

Open banking here more often refers to banks making data available via secure APIs and encompasses a huge variety of changes that would shift the face of banking worldwide. While UOB’s function does not necessarily tie into open banking APIs, one of the end results open banking does hope to achieve is heightened financial literacy—when banking behaviours can be funneled through artificial intelligence and used to cater products or advice to how each individual spends their money.

With UOB jumping the gun somewhat, it will be interesting to see if eLab will become part of UOB’s open banking strategy, and whether this move will be successful in keeping the bank relevant through the many fintechs that will no doubt be launching similar solutions via the API.

UOB is also aiming to increase its digital bank team by 50% in the coming year, of which a quarter of them will be stationed in the new eLab.

Featured image via UOB