Westpac NZ preps augmented reality mobile app

Westpac NZ preps augmented reality mobile app

Westpac New Zealand is preparing to launch an app that uses augmented reality to let customers get account information on their screens simply by viewing their cards through their phones' cameras.

In what the bank claims is a world's first, from September customers who download the iOS app will be able to slide their payment cards under their phone to activate the camera.

They will then see augmented reality, 3D images showing their balances, transaction history, spend locations, payments alerts and other information. Users can also scan their surroundings to find Westpac ATMs and branches.

The app was the winning concept from the bank's crowd sourcing initiative, launched late last year, challenging UK developers and designers to come up with an idea for the chance to win a trip down under.

Simon Pomeroy, chief digital officer, Westpac NZ, says: "Not so long ago augmented reality was considered a futuristic prop in the movies but a growing number of people believe it has the potential to change our lives as much as the internet and mobile phone.

"From the moment we saw the concept for this app in our crowdsourcing competition in the United Kingdom and started to develop it, the impact augmented reality can have in adding a new dimension to mobile banking became apparent."

Comments: (2)

Hitesh Thakkar
Hitesh Thakkar - SME - Fintech startups (APAC and Africa) - India 05 August, 2014, 18:26Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

It looks brilliant to have AR app but, demo has flaw of security. I would have loved demo showing how user authentication happens by AR app before starting the magic.

AR app with Biometric authentication such as face recognisation or Finger print scanner will be just best.

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 06 August, 2014, 17:06Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Highly frictionless app. Even if that's implicit, the app already has a sorta 2 or 3 factor authentication: My smartphone, my card and my lockscreen password. Kudos to Westpac NZ for striking the right balance between security and convenience. Hope they don't screw up the app with some harebrained attempt to make security explicit.