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Most banks will disappear (Part Two)

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Yesterday, I stated that most banks will not disappear. Today, I’m in the other side of the ring and saying that most banks will disappear.

They won’t disappear as banks. They will just disappear as something we think about. Banking will become invisible.

The industry likes to talk about embedded banking, a term that is not appropriate, as it is an inside-out view. The right way to talk about finance being part of the fabric of our digital lives is invisible banking, an outside-in view.

Invisible banking is where you can live in a world without thinking about how to pay or use things. It’s just there. Invisible banking is where my money is around me all the time in devices running on the internet of things. Invisible banking is where the network tells me how well money is running and alerts me if there are things I need to know. Invisible banking is where finance runs as easily as electricity.

Of course, there are questions we need to ask about invisible banking. How do you know when you cannot afford something? How do you know if that payment is going to push you into an overdraft? How do you know when a bill is coming that will expose you to risk?

This is why invisible banking needs to be intelligent. So, imagine a world in the near-term future where you walk around and have an intelligent technology that is part of your being. It might be an eye piece, an ear piece or, more likely, an embedded device such as a chip under your skin, that informs you of what is happening in your world.

What then happens is you never have to open an app, check your balance, see what’s paid by whom or anything. You just walk around and the embedded, invisibly intelligent banking service keeps you informed.

You want to book a holiday? Just ask.

You want a new car? Just ask.

You want to buy a house? Just ask.

The embedded, invisibly intelligent banking service will show you what you can afford and, if you say yes, will do the rest for you. No forms to fill in, no calls to make, no meetings with people, nothing more than just say yes. The embedded, invisibly intelligent bank will just manage everything for you.

As a person who grew up worrying about money, the embedded, invisibly intelligent bank sounds a bit scary. How do I know when money is running out? What happens if my account is overdrawn without me knowing? Who do I call for advice?

Well, the embedded, invisibly intelligent banking service needs no calls, will make sure you know if you’re running out of money and will manage any overdraft issues for you. You don’t need to think or do anything about it.

That’s the real beauty of where we are going: you don’t need to think about it. It just gets done.

Chris Skinner Author Avatar

Chris M Skinner

Chris Skinner is best known as an independent commentator on the financial markets through his blog,, as author of the bestselling book Digital Bank, and Chair of the European networking forum the Financial Services Club. He has been voted one of the most influential people in banking by The Financial Brand (as well as one of the best blogs), a FinTech Titan (Next Bank), one of the Fintech Leaders you need to follow (City AM, Deluxe and Jax Finance), as well as one of the Top 40 most influential people in financial technology by the Wall Street Journal's Financial News. To learn more click here...

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