Bank of America debuts its AI-powered assistant, Erica

The virtual assistant will be available to Bank of America's 25 million mobile clients
Written by Stephanie Condon, Senior Writer

Bank of America on Friday officially introduced Erica, an AI-powered virtual assistant for its 25 million mobile customers.

Erica, which Bank of America began rolling out to customers in March, can help people conduct banking via voice commands, text or with gestures from within the Bank of America app. She can currently help customers with a variety of tasks:

  • Searching for past transactions, such as checks written or shopping activity
  • Accessing key information, such as routing numbers or the closest ATM
  • Scheduling face-to-face meetings at a Bank of America financial center
  • Viewing bills and scheduling payments
  • Locking and unlocking debit cards
  • Transferring money between accounts or sending money to friends with Zelle

"Erica's knowledge of banking and financial services increases with every client interaction," Aditya Bhasin, head of consumer and wealth management technology at Bank of America, said in a statement. "In time, Erica will have the insights to not only help pay a friend or list your transactions at a specific merchant, but also help you make better financial decisions by analyzing your habits and providing guidance."

Mobile banking is increasingly common -- 63 percent of US adults who use a smartphone have at least one financial app, according to Bankrate.

Bank of America said it now has more than 25 million mobile banking customers. Meanwhile, Wells Fargo reported earlier this year that visits to bank branches and ATM interactions were down, reflecting an increased use of digital channels. On the other side of the globe, The National Australia Bank (NAB) announced it was integrating with Amazon Alexa, telling ZDNet that voice-based interactions are increasingly relevant in the banking sector.

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