The Pokémon craze of 2016 showed us two things. First, all someone needs to engage in a compelling augmented reality (AR) experience is a smart phone. Second, that an enterprise running out of steam can be made compelling through the addition of augmented reality.
How does this relate to banking? Any interaction between a person and a bank should be treated as a game. That is, it should have a set of game mechanics suited to the role of the user, in other words, suited to the game being played, just like the original Pokémon. For instance, in retail banking, the game looks like a ‘bucket list’, where a person builds a list of goals to meet, and changes their lifestyle to achieve the items on the list. So, in retail banking, AR could be added to the bucket list game to make it more compelling.
The revised payment service directive, PSD2, will enable any vendor with a bucket list game to offer it to most Europeans, notwithstanding Brexit. A bucket list game made compelling by AR is the market entrant banks have been fearing and fighting for years.
What would the game look like and how would AR make it compelling?
The game would be played with an intelligent agent that can see and categorise all players’ spending and sources of income. If all players’ DDAs are subject to PSD2, then this data will be available to the agent. The agent first helps the players create and prioritise their goals. Then it uses knowledge of the player’s lifestyle to define how and when goals can be achieved, preferably using multiple finance products to get there. It tracks players’ progress and informs them if the trajectory toward meeting goals slips or improves.
In a traditional approach, all this would be done in a physical location. AR takes the game to the players’ daily lives, augmenting every potential purchase with a visual cue rendering its effect on the game. Paying for a goal like a car, a house or an appliance might show the goal being captured, like a Pokémon, with a reward. Conversely, spending that increases the gap to meet goals might show the Pokémon getting further away and losing points.
Banks must implement intelligent technology that can capitalise on breakthroughs like AR in order to ensure that they are not disintermediated in the new world of Open Banking.
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