On Thursday, Singapore-based DBS Bank, Southeast Asia's biggest bank, announced a banking API developer platform that it says is "the largest by a bank anywhere in the world."
The platform, which is the latest in a series of API launches by large financial institutions, consists of over 150 APIs that cover numerous functional categories, including accounts, payments, fund transfers, rewards and loans. And unlike some banks, which limit the extent to which developers can build end-to-end experiences around their APIs, DBS Bank is giving developers considerable access to the innards of the banking operation.
For example, the DBS Bank accounts API allows developers to build applications that initiate an account opening process and allow users to apply for a debit card.
According to David Gledhill, DBS Banks' Group CIO, "DBS embarked on a journey to transform our tech infrastructure nine years ago. With that early start, we are now ahead of many others in being digital to the core. This has given us an edge - enabling us to operate with fintech-like agility and nimbleness, and also platform-like inclusiveness. This will be transformative in ways not imagined previously, both for the customer and the bank."
While the APIs DBS Bank is making accessible to developers will obviously support financial firms, including fintechs hoping to build innovative new digital financial services, some of DBS Bank's early partners include major brands like McDonald's, which is using the PayLah! API to support cashless payment options for its McDelivery food delivery service. Another partner is Homage, a startup in-home care service for seniors, has integrated with DBS Bank's rewards API to enable individuals to redeem their credit card reward points for care assessments for family members.
Developers can sign up for a DBS developer account and access API documentation through the bank's developer portal. A sandbox is available and enables developers to experiment with the APIs before they request production access for their applications.