Digit Automated Savings Bot Comes to Facebook Messenger

Nearly everyone knows that they should be saving money but often times that goal is easier said than done. As I’ve written about on this site before, arranging to have technology set money aside for you has proven to be a popular and effective way to save without the sting. Now Digit is taking that concept to a new level.

After helping users to save a reported quarter of a million dollars since launching in 2015, Digit is now introducing a new platform for their service: Facebook Messenger. With the company’s new bot customers will be able to get updates both on their checking account as well as on their Digit automatic savings account. The bot also includes a bit of fun such as .gifs and memes to interact with and entertain users as they reach their goals. 

While the idea of automatic transfers to savings is hardly new, Digit goes one step further. As VentureBeat reports the service employs algorithms that assess customer spending habits to determine how much they can pilfer away for savings without the user noticing. CEO Ethan Bloch explained his company’s philosophy to VentureBeat, saying “We think there’s a great place for machine learning and automation around this idea of making sure you can pay all your bills on time and in full.” 

In addition to general savings, Digit can help users reach specific goals such as saving for a vacation or other large purchase. Furthermore in years past the company has run a promotion to encourage users to save a portion of their tax refund. That program will return this year and also make its Messenger bot debut. 

What makes the new Messenger integration exciting is that it not only opens up the possibilities for Digit but could also help lead the way for more personal finance-centric bots. After all this comes at a time when, despite a few other such bots already in use, security concerns have been blamed for keeping more advanced AI offerings at bay for now. In that aspect there could be a lot of eyes on Digit’s bot to see how it performs both in terms of security as well as in popularity.

Another interesting note in regards to Digit’s story is how this FinTech company has operated in partial partnership with a traditional bank — at the moment all of Digit’s savings accounts are held by Wells Fargo. In fact Bloch goes as far to say that his company, “would not exist today were it not for Wells Fargo.” Unfortunately 2016 was not the kindest to Wells Fargo following scandals involving unauthorized customer accounts. In turn Digit is working to offer more banking options for customers who might not want to give their business to go to Wells Fargo.

Digit’s simple idea of helping people save more money automatically by adding smart solutions personifies what the FinTech sector is all about. By bringing their service to a platform as large (and growing) as Facebook Messenger, they’re also opening the door to a new market that may not even be familiar with such financial technology offerings. Ultimately this company and their new bot will be one to watch in 2017 and beyond.

Author

Jonathan Dyer

I'm a small town guy living in Los Angeles looking to make solid financial decisions. I write for a number of finance websites, including HuffingtonPost and Business2Community. I founded DyerNews.com in 2015 to focus on personal finance and the emerging FinTech markets.

Other Articles by Jonathan Dyer

Marqeta Expands Credit Program with New APIs and More

A FinTech that specializes in creating credit card experiences is rolling out some new features. This week, Marqeta announced what it calls a "significant expansion" of its credit platform. This includes more than 40 new credit APIs that will further help clients craft and launch their own credit card products. Additionally, the company notes an updated intuitive dashboard. Using this platform, businesses can create unique card options that can not...

PayPal Launches Small Business Credit Card with Flat 2% Cashback

The popular platform PayPal is rolling out a new product built specifically for small businesses. Today, the FinTech announced the launch of The PayPal Business Cashback Mastercard. The new card will be issued by WebBank and marks the first time PayPal has offered a business credit card. With the PayPal Business Cashback card, business owners will be able to earn 2% cashback on all purchases. This earning rate is not...

Wells Fargo Unveils New Autograph Rewards Visa Card

A new rewards credit card is on the way from Wells Fargo. Today, the bank introduced its Autograph card, which expands the company's refreshed card portfolio. In terms of rewards, the Wells Fargo Autograph Card will earn 3 points per dollar spent in a number of categories. These include restaurants, travel and transit, gas stations, select streaming services, and phone plans. All other purchases will earn 1x points. Beyond the...