Posted on October 13, 2016 by staff

Virtual assistants like Apple’s Siri ‘to replace banks’


KPMG has predicted that mass market retail banks will be largely invisible to consumers by 2030.

In a new report – ‘Meet EVA, the future face of the Invisible Bank’ – it outlines its expectation that banks will be hidden by an e-personal assistant similar to Apple’s Siri.

It says EVA will fulfil daily personal and financial obligations, informed by data gathered from a fully connected way of life.

Warren Mead, fintech lead at KPMG, said: “Banks are making efforts to improve customer service through use of exciting technologies like robotics, artificial intelligence and blockchain.

“But the pace of change is slow and in reality, I’d say banks are only 10 per cent of their way through their digital transformations.”

In a worst-case scenario the banks of today could be relegated to the position of a white-labelled product provider.

Customer service call centres, branches and sales teams may all become things of the past.

“Getting most banks to our vision of 2030 will be painful,” added Mead.

“Currently, technology firms invest 10-20 per cent of revenues into research and development, but for banks it’s just 1-2 per cent.

“With banks’ return on equity under 5 per cent it’s hard to see that changing significantly in the short to medium term, but if firms want to remain relevant, it has to.”

KPMG believes banks which utilise their data, drive down costs, build effective partnerships with a broad range of third parties and have robust cyber security will do best.

Adrian Clamp, UK head of customer advisory at KPMG, added: “Our recent CEO survey highlighted that 79 per cent of UK-based CEOs are concerned about the speed at which their company is able to harness digital technology to connect with customers.

“Innovative new technology is impacting the traditional way in which customers engage with brands.

“Many large UK companies now find themselves needing to catch up with these fundamental shifts in consumer behaviour.

“As a result, many CEOs have begun to invest in transforming their companies into customer-centric, digitally-enabled businesses.”