Client advisors in Wealth Management Switzerland have started an experiment with two newly developed avatars, “Daniel Kalt”, a digital version of UBS Regional Chief Investment Officer Switzerland and “Fin”, a friendly helper and digital assistant. The avatars, who can interact via voice and eye contact with the clients, are being deployed to client meetings via an LCD screen. Fin can be called in to handle simple banking transactions such as ordering a new credit card while Daniel Kalt supports with more complex, market-oriented topics and provides CIO House View content on demand.

The avatars are currently being tested with a set number of Swiss WM clients at a UBS branch in Zurich over a period of three months. Internally known by the name UBS Companion, the experiment is conducted in collaboration with IBM and Artificial Intelligence (IA) company FaceMe, which developed the avatars and the technology supporting them.

Watch the video and experience avatars Fin and Daniel Kalt in action

With the experiment, UBS wants to test the acceptance of digital assistants in a wealth management context and explore new ways of providing clients with frictionless access to our expertise in the age of intelligent technology. Both digital assistants naturally interact via voice and vision and contribute to the dialog between the client and the advisor using artificial intelligence from both IBM and FaceMe. Advisory services were consciously selected as one of the key interaction points between clients and the bank in which the use of the latest technologies could be tested in a targeted and thoughtful manner.

Another aim of UBS Companion is to find out how much trust clients have in communicating with AI systems and how human-like these should be. Fin and Daniel Kalt were purposefully designed with a different set of characteristics in order to discover in what scenarios each type of assistant best meets the needs of the client.

“It is impressive to see to what extent technology is already capable of digitizing humans. In the services industry machines are most likely to augment humans in common interactions and routine problem-solving situations. This could allow our advisors to focus more on tasks which add a higher value to the overall client experience,” says the real Daniel Kalt.

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