UBank uses IBM’s Watson for home loans chatbot

RoboChat can answer questions on 40 core topics

NAB subsidiary UBank has launched what it claims is Australia’s first AI chatbot for home loans.

UBank’s ‘RoboChat’ is based on IBM’s Watson cognitive computing platform and has been trained on data derived from customer questions submitted via a LiveChat facility on the bank’s website.

UBank said that the system can answer questions such as “What term do you offer on home loans?” and “Do you offer redraws and how do they work?”

The system based on Watson’s Conversation API can respond to hundreds of questions on 40 core topics.

“Our goal is to deliver simpler, better, smarter banking to our customers and RoboChat will help deliver on this by streamlining the application form,” UBank CEO Lee Hatton said in a statement.

“If you’ve gathered all of your paperwork, the form can be completed in as little time as it takes you to have your breakfast. And, securing one of the most competitive rates in the market could help a customer save thousands of dollars in interest over the life of a loan.”

“UBank’s work with IBM Watson is a powerful example of how organisations are leveraging cognitive virtual assistants that have the ability to engage in a conversation, ask questions, learn and respond in context – as opposed to providing stock responses,” said Brock Douglas, Vice President Watson, IBM Asia Pacific.

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