In the last decade we have generated more information that in the whole of history of mankind.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is the ability physical devices have to be on the Internet and interconnected with other devices. It’s machine to machine communication (M2M). Internet is no longer just a Cloud, now it has a body in the shape of a device. These gadgets are the ones you use in your everyday life: your Smartphone, car, oven, the router, home plugs, robot vacuum… each time it’s more inherent in diverse sectors and fields: it’s the Internet of Everything.
There are thousands of sensors, advanced communication networks and analytical processes based on Big Data. Objects have more sensors each time, they communicate with an Intelligent System that generates information. It’s as if the planet was creating a new nervous system.
The arrival of the Internet of Everything: IoT in all sectors
- Home: home automation makes possible for all devices in a house to be connected. Today we have at our disposal intelligent lighting, locks, rolling shutters, cleaning assistants and many more devices. We can even control our house from our mobile devices. In no time we will have a fridge that is able to give us a heads up whenever food is about to expire.
- Transport: cars connected with their environment, oriented towards improving security and user experience inside the vehicle.For example, cars that look for parking spots or that drive alone.
- Agriculture and farming: sensors that take temperature measurements and other variables that support cultivation. Geolocation of animals.
- Energy and water: achieving a more efficient management and sustainable consumption.Intelligent meters that store and transmit consumption, enabling to reduce heating and water consumption in both homes and enterprises.
- Retail: with sensors and cameras located in large surfaces that allow to study client’s behavior. This allows them to know the client’s movement in the store, where they stop, what they look at. All this information allows to offer customized products and services, as well as a better location and distribution of products.
- Health: tracking of patients in real time. Wearable devices, like bracelets that control the number of daily steps, our heart rate.
When we’re talking about IoT we’re talking about a new industrial revolution, one of the biggest technological transformations of the present and future.
The difficulty now is no longer predicting the future, but believing it instead.
IoT as part of banking innovation
Major Banks and Fintech work in exploring all the possibilities that IoT can provide to banking innovation. The devices that clients have: mobile phones, bracelets, smartwatch… they have transformed into a new communication channel between clients and the Bank.
The data these devices hold allow us to understand the client’s needs, habits and wishes better. Therefore, they can provide a customized financial services’ offer, where the speaker won’t always be the client, but also their own devices.
These are some of the real applications of IoT in the Banking System:
- They are little devices, the size of a car controller, based on Bluetooth technology (BLE). These devices constantly emit a signal that identifies them in a unique way, with the objective of being caught by another mobile device. This other device, for example a Smartphone, would catch the signal. Then, if such Smartphone has an app installed which is able to deal with the information it has received from the beacon, that App would send information about the beacon that sent the signal to the central systems, as well as to the Client who has that App installed on their phone. Like this, we could carry out a Recognition and Client Identification when they enter the branch office, allowing the employee to get ahead and greet them personally, as well as making product offers that adjust to their profiles.
Financial risk management:
- Through the creation of risk profiles, based on the information we have about the Client, which is key for risk approval in operations like consumption funding, mortgages.
The payments field:
- It’s one of the most evolved in the application of IoT. Facilitating the payment experience through mobile phones, smartwatch, contactless bracelets is already a reality.
Virtual assistants and Chatbots:
- Like Siri, Google Assistant or Alexa. We are evolving towards a Conversational Bank, allowing users to interact in a more natural and human way, improving their experience with the Bank.
These are all real examples of how the banking system can take advantage of IoT to improve their clients’ interaction and experience. Nevertheless, this new environment increases the banks’ exposure to cyberattacks. They have a big challenge in preserving the safety of all connectivity and data access to guarantee and keep the client’s trust.
There’s no doubt that we are moving towards a world in which everything will be interconnected: we’re moving towards the Internet of Everything. For the banking industry, this is an horizon of new possibilities to evolve and ease their clients’ life.