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NatWest trials letting customers bank by talking to their Google Assistant

NatWest customers will be able to check their bank balance and transactions through the Google Assistant feature on their smart speakers or smartphones using just their voices, as part of a new trial. 

The trial of 500 customers starts today and will run for three months. Customers will set up the feature using their existing online banking password and PIN.

When they want to use the feature, customers will be asked to say two digits of their six-digit PIN to confirm their identity, and will then be given a verbal answer to the question they're asking, such as "What's my bank balance?" On a smartphone, the answer will also appear on-screen.  

They'll be able to ask their Google Assistant eight different questions about their account, including details of recent or pending transactions.

Customers will also be offered a range of tips on topics such as password security and keeping banking apps up to date.

What does NatWest say? 

Kristen Bennie, head of 'open experience' at NatWest, said: "This technology will make it easier for people to bank with us and could bring particular benefits to those who have a disability as voice banking eliminates the need for customers to use a screen or keyboard.

"This is one of a number of services that the bank is aiming to develop this year that uses cutting edge, innovative technology to better serve our customers."

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