To some people, fewer things in life are more mundane than managing their personal finances. Checking account balances, paying bills, reviewing your credit scores — it’s just not fun, and it requires effort.
Amazon and Capital One seem to be trying to change that with a new partnership between the bank and Alexa, Amazon’s voice assistant app.
Instead of having to get your computer, find your paper statement or open an app on your smartphone, you can say something like, “Alexa, ask Capital One when my Quicksilver Cash Rewards credit card payment is due,” and you’ll get a response, according to a Mashable report on the product announcement.
You can even ask Alexa to pay your Capital One credit card bill. Of course, you need to have an Alexa-enabled device like the Amazon Echo to make that command valuable. (Otherwise, you’re pretty much talking to an imaginary friend who can’t do anything for you.)
It’s a lazy person’s dream (at least in theory). For someone who prioritizes efficiency or the ability to multitask, the Alexa/Capital One system seems to make a lot of sense. Beyond the initial setup and setting a personal identification number (PIN) you’ll need to use when asking Alexa to handle your Capital One account information, it sounds like a really easy way to manage your financial accounts.
It has the potential to save yourself from your laziness, as well: Imagine sitting on your couch, thinking of getting dinner delivered, and while you’re looking over a takeout menu you ask Alexa for your credit card balance — the response might make you reconsider the value of a home-cooked meal.
Lazy Finance 101
This new tool might be convenient for cardholders, but it’s not like having a Capital One account and Alexa is the only way to make money management easy. Setting up bills for automatic payment is the first tip of Lazy Finance 101, and dozens of banks and personal finance tools have mobile apps.
Even with all the ways you can simplify your financial life, it’s still important to check on technology, to make sure banks receive payments and there are no errors on your credit reports. You may think you’re doing everything right, but unless you’re checking your accounts and reviewing your credit for accuracy, you can’t be sure everything is running smoothly. Make a habit of looking at your account activity to be sure payments go through and you haven’t been mis-charged or breached. You can get two free credit scores every 30 days on Credit.com to make sure you didn’t accidentally miss any bills or signs of fraud.
Note: It’s important to remember that interest rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products frequently change. As a result, rates, fees and terms for credit cards, loans and other financial products cited in these articles may have changed since the date of publication. Please be sure to verify current rates, fees and terms with credit card issuers, banks or other financial institutions directly.
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