As a headline, this isn’t all that surprising. I spend my (week) days with my nose in blockchain projects, digging into the relative perils and joys of APIs, and tracking the different approaches of banks, lenders, consultants and large institutions as they look to engage with new technologies. Fuelled by founder stories, trade magazines, and niche conferences tracking every twist and turn of the financial landscape, it’s a ‘series’ more compelling (and time-consuming) than some of our best known TV soaps.
But I still go home, and read articles in the Sunday papers, announcing the arrival of ‘so-called “Fin-Tech” ‘– explaining that a new wave of technology is ‘starting to take advantage’ of waning consumer trust in banks, and a desire for more connected digital services.
There’s no real reason why any particular “Brit” needs to spend too much time thinking about Open Banking, particularly. Not everyone will be wildly excited by the CMA back story, PSD2, or the variations in its implementation across Europe. They do care about fair service and easier ways to manage their money. And they do care – increasingly – about how their data is being used. Consumers aren’t on ‘data lockdown’ – but we are increasingly aware of who has permission to see it, use it, and importantly – for what.
So I don’t think it matters that consumers don’t know about ‘Open Banking’ as a phrase. Let’s talk about services, about benefits, and about trust. That’s a conversation that needs to be had – after all, it’s the ‘pesky consumer’ perception of these areas that will determine which brands and players win the ‘”battle” in this new world. Money management app Yolt tackles this really nicely – their post from the end of last year is phrased around phrases like “what it means for you”, “what’s the big deal?”, and “what are some of the real-life benefits?”. That's a dinner party chat I can get on board with.
Brits in the dark on Open Banking