What comes to your mind when you hear the term ‘Digital Banking’? Most of us think about online fund transfers or checking account details on the banking app. But what if you were told that this is just the tip of the iceberg?

Digital banking has transformed radically in the past couple of years even as it continues to roll out new features every day that are redefining banking as we know it. For instance, did you know that you can now transfer money to your friends and family through social media? Had you ever imagined printing your own debit or credit card at a kiosk? Things that seemed too futuristic just a few years ago are now becoming the mainstay of the banking sector.

Here’s a quick explanation of what digital banking means in 2018 and what UAE has to offer to customers.

Banks are embracing ‘digital’

Paperwork, signing cheques, bank statements, and more paperwork – That is what conventional banking meant a few years ago. But all that is passé now. Today, bank customers prefer carrying out all transactions online and for three very good reasons – It’s swift, economical and involves zero paperwork. Keeping abreast with the times, many UAE banking organizations including Emirates NBD and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) have already launched their digital banking platforms, with many others planning to roll out their own digital arms in the near future.

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Let’s look at the new digital banking experiences in the UAE that have already been launched or are already in the pipeline.

Emirates NBD’s Liv.

Liv., which is projected as a lifestyle digital bank by Emirates NBD, is already making waves in the UAE and has successfully acquired over 100,000 customers in its first year. You can set up your new account on the app by simply scanning your Emirates ID card. Once you are logged in, you can use an array of digital features such as sharing money via social media, splitting bills with friends, keeping track of daily spends by tagging expenses and more.

What’s more, Liv. has also tied up with several other service providers that offer greats discounts and offers on restaurants, getaways, movies and more. To know more about Liv.’s services, visit their website.

ADCB’s uBank

ADCB stepped up its digital game with the launch of its first uBank digital banking center in Abu Dhabi’s Yas Mall last year. While uBank offers a bouquet of online banking services, what stands out is its instant printing of debit/credit cards and cheque leaves at its smart kiosk. Customers can also easily replace lost credit and debit cards with minimal hassle.

Apart from that, uBank offers ‘Video Assist’ services on its app wherein customers can get in touch with a bank representative for queries regarding mortgage options, investment plans, account-related issues, etc. To know more about uBank’s services, visit their website.

[Related: Have you upgraded to the ‘Digital Wallet’ yet?]

Dubai Holding’s new digital bank

The global investment holding firm has announced an ambitious plan to launch its next-gen digital bank, which may debut its first services next year. The digital bank is being pegged as a “state-of-the-art platform to facilitate digital transactions” and will see an investment of a whopping AED 1 Billion over the next five years. Dubai Holding says it plans to offer unique perks to its customers, including access to a personalized and dynamic loyalty program.

Apart from the ones mentioned above, a number of banks in the UAE have announced digital banking initiatives, with a focus on digital-only banking platforms. So hopefully, we will be seeing many more new and innovative features that continue to improve our banking experience in the future.