Swiss banking giant UBS is developing facial recognition software that will track whether people are paying attention. And this tool could impact the life and health insurance market.

The tool, dubbed Emotionadvisor, will be used with the bank’s wealthy private banking clients during face to face meetings in a bid to make sure the complex financial products that are being proposed are fully understood.

But the software could also be highly relevant for the global life and health insurance and reinsurance industry, particularly when advising clients on complex and sensitive products  and / or deals.

Eye movements

Emotionadvisor captures human emotions from facial expressions and eye movements by tracking hundreds of muscle movements using a webcam. This will flag up a message if the client is completely lost or is not fully on board with a suggestion.

The artificial intelligence (AI) tool is being developed by a Lausanne based software company called nViso at UBS’s innovation hub in Zurich.

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Emotionadvisor’s development comes after GlobalData Financial Services recently highlighted why the use of speech technology and artificial intelligence (AI) could help insurance providers improve call-centre services and potentially lead to more positive customer experiences and higher retention rates.

Cogito is a company that is utilizing speech technology and AI in order to analyse customer calls and give company representatives feedback on how to make the conversation more productive in real-time.

Customer retention

Launched in 2007 and based in the US, Cogito is helping companies to improve their service and retain more customers.

Cogito’s voice-analytics software tracks in real-time the voice and speech patterns of both customers and call-centre agents.

It measures variation in pitch, the rate of speech, conversation flow, pauses, voice tension, and interruptions, in addition to whether the conversation is one-sided. The software analyses speech in order to provide call-center employees with a dashboard which shows how the conversation is going.

Being able to assess the customer’s mood using emotional intelligence allows the agent to better engage the client during the conversation.

Within insurance, direct providers and brokers have the greatest potential to adopt this technology. This is not only to aid customers who are calling to purchase insurance, but also to provide support through the claims process.

For all the latest insight, news and data on the global life and health insurance and reinsurance markets, visit