Hey Siri, send my mum $500

OCBC Bank becomes the first in Asia Pacific to let customers send cash through Siri, just be careful who you lend your phone to.

OCBC Bank customers can now send money to their friends and family by issuing a simple voice command to Siri, Apple’s virtual assistant. Users just have to tell Siri whom to send the payment to and how much they want to send, then use the OCBC Pay Anyone mobile e-payment service. Another new channel for customers to conveniently send money to friends is through iMessage: If midway through texting, they need not even leave the conversation screen or open any other mobile app.

According to the bank's announcement, Siri and iMessage services for OCBC Pay Anyone are available to all OCBC Bank customers using iPhone devices running the iOS10 software and the latest OCBC Mobile Banking app. The payments are fully secure as they are authenticated by the customer using their mobile banking credentials. These innovations were developed by OCBC Bank’s in-house mobile developer, E-Business and Group Customer Experience teams.

OCBC Bank’s Head of E-Business Singapore Aditya Gupta said this technology is the latest in the series of digital innovations that OCBC Bank has introduced to make day-to-day banking and payments more simple, fast and accessible for customers. He said the bank is confident that the consumers are going to love these new payment channels.

"Last month, we increased the OCBC Pay Anyone daily transfer limit from $100 to $1,000 and, since then, the amount of money being sent via our e-payment service has increased 250 per cent. We expect e-payments to have a multi-fold increase and will continue to add more payment channels for customers to our suite of digital services,” Gupta noted.

He furthered, "We know that customers now prefer their banking to be embedded in other things they do, rather than having to start their interaction journey from a bank’s platform. We’re pleased to add these two new channels – Siri and iMessage - for customers to make payments with OCBC Pay Anyone. We are integrating payments into our customers’ everyday lives and making it completely frictionless for them to engage us via actions that are second nature to them – using messaging and voice commands."

The bank explained that to send money using Siri, users simply need to instruct Siri with a voice command indicating whom from their contact list to send money to, and the amount to send. An example is: “Pay John Tan $50”. Upon making this request, the Siri interface will pop up on the iPhone, asking the user to confirm the payment details which will automatically indicate “John Tan” as the recipient and “$50” as the amount to transfer. Once the payment details are confirmed, the user will be guided to complete the transfer using OCBC Pay Anyone.

Additionally, users can also choose to conveniently send money via iMessage while texting their friends – without leaving the conversation by closing the messaging app or opening another app. Within the iMessage conversation screen, users can choose the OCBC Pay Anyone iMessage app to initiate the payment directly to the person they are chatting with. The app automatically populates the recipient’s name, and the user just needs to indicate the amount to send and complete the transaction with OCBC Pay Anyone. Once the money is sent, the OCBC Pay Anyone app will close and the user can conveniently resume the chat with their friend within the same iMessage window.

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