The Future of the Financial WorkStation is Mobile, says Samsung

EXCLUSIVE—Do bank employees, Wall Street traders, or other financial professionals really need a desktop computer anymore? Samsung says, no.

Rather, financial professionals should focus on the mobile phone, which is why Samsung is taking a mobile-first approach to its solutions for finance. The company demoed just such a solution that allows a user to move from a mobile to a desktop, using a Samsung S8 and its “DeX” station, at the Finovate conference this week alongside Thomson Reuters.

“The experience is one where the financial professional is waking up in the morning, they’re accessing their market data on the [Reuters] Eikon application securely on their Samsung,” Reginald Jones, director of sales, regulated industry for Samsung, told Bank Innovation. “As they move from home, to being in transit, to actually settling in at their office, they’re able to extend this experience from a mobile to a desktop experience.”

The solution also works with Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8, which is officially available in stores today.

The goal, however, is to provide more flexibility for the more mobile worker, which may eventually eliminate the desktop. Samsung’s solution can be implemented using just a smartphone and a DeX device (which resembles a USB-connected hockey puck that the user will plug their phone into).

Most importantly for traders and for others who work with sensitive financial data, Samsung’s mobile-first solution also utilizes biometric authentication, including facial recognition and behavioral biometrics such as the way a user types or holds her phone.

“The authentication is looking into all of your different patterns as you type your name, how the phone is engaging with you, to certify that you are in fact the right end user,” said Jones.

Samsung’s facial recognition is integrated into a user’s camera, which remains on the financial professional as they work. If they step out of frame, or another user steps into frame, “secured content” — such as sensitive market data — is blurred out. For added security, users can rely on Bluetooth proximity between their smartwatch (Samsung’s Gear) and their phone; if they step away from their workstation and break the Bluetooth connection between the two devices, the device will lock.

The end goal of all of this is the future of the financial workspace, says Jones, where it is no longer necessary to include a desktop.

“Can we simplify [the workstation] using a mobile-first approach? There are many employees, depending on where they are in the bank, they really don’t need a desktop anymore—they perhaps no longer need a laptop,” said Jones. “They’re moving from a workstation, to a conference room, to a taxi cab, to an airport, to the train station; wherever they’re going, the thing that’s with t hem all of the time is the phone.”