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Like you, I thought that this was pretty unimpressive at first. It seemed to me that this is just a regular bank account and that they expose some API and you have to program the web/mobile app yourself. The homepage is rather uninformative and I didn't really get what this is about until I went to their press release page: https://root.co.za/press/. Then it hit me. You can write small pieces of code, sort of like small apps, to manage what happens when you send or receive money. What's even more interesting is that you can share these apps on their Root platform, sort of like an app store for internet/mobile banking functionalities it seems.They mention some examples of what you could do and this looks seriously interesting now.



Replying to myself here because I can no longer edit my comment. Just wanted to say that, while this is potentially a huge thing, there are certain things that need to be taken into account.

First of all, there's heavy regulation when it comes to banking software. There are laws and bank regulations that are here to prevent people from losing their money and/or suing the bank for some reason or another. Root needs to take great care to ensure that the software written by their users stays within the boundaries of south african law and their own bank regulations.

Second, the software absolutely needs to be reviewed not just by people from Root but also by a reputable independent consulting company.

Third, Root mustn't allow direct initiation of transactions from their platform to prevent potential disastrous effects due to bugs. You should be able to write code that does something when the money is being received or sent from your account but not code that charges your account.




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