Features on the bank’s new beta stage product are similar to those already provided by smaller, digital-only retail lenders known as ‘challenger banks’.

One such challenger, Starling Bank, recently launched its Marketplace, a product that allows other fintech vendors to offer their services within the bank’s app.

HSBC Beta will only be available to U.K. customers initially, but Bhatia said the lender aims to take what it learns from the app’s beta stage of development overseas in the long-term.

“We are an international bank, and that is a unique strength of ours,” he said.

“PSD2 is European, we have a European base, so clearly the learnings we have from the U.K. will travel well overseas, immediately in Europe. But rest assured, open banking as an idea is being embraced by regulators across the world.”

The EU’s Revised Payment Service Directive (PSD2) will give third party non-banking firms the ability to perform payment services for banking customers and access their data. PSD2 comes into effect on January 13, 2018.

And the U.K.’s Competitive Markets Authority has also set out plans to enable smaller challenger banks to compete with large lenders. The CMA’s measures seek to enable customers to share their data with other banks and third parties, with the long-term aim of allowing them to access their financial accounts through one single app.

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