Of College Days, Comparisons and Connected Accounts

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Everyone remembers their college days fondly, right? We all love to reminisce and make those ‘then-and-now' comparisons. Life seemed so much easier back when we had more time, fewer responsibilities and a greater capacity for many things.

But one thing we rarely compare with our college selves is our finances. In many ways, most of us are better off when it comes to income. But what about money management?

If you got an allowance from your parents (or not), you probably had just one bank account back then. And apart from some questionable financial decisions, it was fairly easy to keep track of your finances. You knew exactly how much you had and you also knew that you were in trouble if you spent too much.

Connecting accounts?

From there on, you got your first job and opened a salary account in another bank. Then someone decided to trust you with a credit card and your finances have just been a blur ever since. But wouldn’t it be great if you could have all the money you’re earning right now but just one bank account to keep track of it all?

Short of transferring all your money into one account and closing the rest, having just one bank account is not a viable option for most of us. We’ve come up with various uses for each account and have just got used to functioning like that. So, what’s the next best thing? Connecting all your accounts, of course! But wait, is that even possible?

The short answer, it most certainly is with ‘Connected Accounts’ on Fi. The Connected Accounts feature links your multiple bank accounts with Fi, giving you a comprehensive view of your spending and balance all in one place. Wondering how this works?

Total balance on Connected Accounts

Enter the Account Aggregator

Fi is the first neobank to build a product on top of the Account Aggregator (AA) framework. What’s that, you say? The AA framework has been developed by the RBI in consultation with a range of stakeholders from across the financial sector. You can think of it as a virtual highway enabling the free flow of financial data and paving the way towards a more connected financial ecosystem.

But why should you care about all this stuff anyway? Let’s take an example. Consider all the data you generate when surfing the web. Make one search for a pair of shoes and you’ll be seeing ads for shoes everywhere you go. This means your data is being shared and used across multiple digital platforms without you having any say about it.

Similarly, you generate financial data every time you make a transaction. And to give you more power over your financial data, the AA framework was born. The fundamental principle at work here is ‘user consent-based data sharing’. That means you decide if you want to share your data, with whom you share your data and for how long that data should be shared. Also, you can revoke consent at any time, placing you firmly at the centre of this new technology.

How is Fi using it

To get on the AA framework, you have to download the app of an AA company, register with said company and give consent to share your financial data. At Fi, we have partnered with RBI-licensed AA companies to make this sign up process seamless for users within our app. All you have to do is give consent to share your data with Fi and we’ll take care of the rest.

Now, all that is well and good, but the question is should you connect your accounts? The short answer, a definitive yes. Expenditure and bank balance tracking is just the beginning for us. We have so much more in store for you. From a smarter AI-powered digital financial assistant like Ask.Fi that can search transactions across your bank accounts to meaningful and actionable insights into your overall financial behaviour, the possibilities are endless.

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