A UK Bank is showing off its integration with Google Home before the device is even offered in the country. Starling Bank was formed in 2016 as an online only “digital bank” operated primarily through your smartphone. Since Starling is focused on convenience and customer service, it was only logical to extend the services to voice assistants. Several banks in the U.S. have already linked bank accounts so you can access your account balance and other information on Amazon’s Alexa. Starling appears to be the first bank to have Google Home integration and to enable money transfers.
Banking and Voice Assistants
Building a connector for Google Home makes sense even though it has less than 10% of the home-based voice assistant market share today. When you build an Action for Google Home, you have built it for Google Assistant as well. Google Home may not be officially available in the UK today, but Google Assistant is on track to be rolled out to hundreds of millions of Android phones this year. Starling Bank is a mobile-first bank and digital only. It is logical that they would want Google Assistant accessibility to support their core offerings. Amazon is selling Echo with the Alexa voice assistant in the UK today. I have reached out to Sterling Bank and inquired whether they plan to introduce an Alexa skill in the future and when they expect to have the Starling Bank Google Action live for consumers. Stay tuned.