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Will SMS alerts die?: Soon bank customers will access transaction details via WhatsApp


We are in the era where SMS use case is shrinking but still banking transaction details including travel and entertainment majorly rely on it. However, soon such details would find a way on your WhatsApp as major banks such as SBI Bank, ICICI Bank, and Axis bank are testing the instant messaging app for communication.

Of late, WhatsApp messenger has been facing regulators heat before launching its UPI-powered payment service in India.

After Kotak Mahindra’s pilot with the Facebook-owned company, State Bank of India (SBI), ICICI Bank, and Axis bank are testing WhatsApp to send banking communications including ATM cash withdrawal details and point of sales (PoS) transactions amongst others.

Currently, all banks use regular SMS service to send transaction details to their customers by charging some amount. Sending regular updates to customers through WhatsApp would not only be cheaper than SMS, it would also trigger greater consumer engagement (given that customers spend significant time on WA).

Banks are considering all the aspects related to integrating WhatsApp as a communication channel.

Also Read: Northern Railway to leverage WhatsApp to monitor cleanliness in trains

The report further added that the banks cannot discontinue the SMS service due to regulatory norms. But, if customers give the bank their consent to only receive WhatsApp alerts, there is a possibility that the only mode of communication will be through the messaging platform.

Meanwhile, private sector banks like ICICI and Kotak Mahindra are also testing feature of banking on WhatsApp. Initially, it will offer services like updating PAN, mobile number, email ID, Aadhaar number, activating/deactivating passbook, canceling mandates for standing payments, and changing customers home branch.

Recently, Financial marketplace Wishfin launched ‘Whatsapp for Credit Score” to check credit score on the instant messenger app for free.

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