India’ second largest private lender HDFC Bank, tested its humanoid, at its innovation laboratory. According to the MD and CEO HDFC bank, Dr. N.Kamakodi, “The total business of the bank crossed the milestone of Rs 50,000 Crores during the second quarter posting a net profit of Rs. 123.76 Crores. We are happy to introduce CUB Lakshmi, the ROBOT. This is an appropriate step in the right direction. The ROBOT is capable of multitasking and will soon be integrated to our automation process”.
Lakshmi is artificial intelligence powered robot and took more than six months to develop. This first on-site huamanoid will be able to speak in English, gesture and engage in a life-like manner in conversations. The robot can interact with customers in over 125 subjects including account balance and interest rates on loans. “Want to know your account balance? Interest rates on home loans? Deferred payments or possible charges to be incurred on fixed deposit closure? Lakshmi can answer it all. Apart from answering generic questions, we have also programmed it to connect to the core banking solution. If a customer wants to know his bank account details or transaction history, the robot can flash the answer on its display. Lakshmi only talks out loud on generic subjects. If you visited our branch with your girlfriend, she won’t embarrass you by showing your low account balance…. We are also looking at enabling it so that it can service visually challenged individuals. Worldwide very few banks employ robots at branches and we want to bring a whole new experience to India”, the CEO further added on the launch. However, the sensitive financial information such as account details are displayed discreetly on the robot's screen and not voiced.
Currently, the HDFC bank has readied only one version of Lakshmi and has plans for approximately 30 robots deployed at key branches by the end of the year if Lakshmi proves a hit with customers.