French incumbent becomes latest to unveil digital assistant; preps Orange Bank for July launch.

Orange this week became the latest company to launch a voice-activated digital assistant.

Called Djingo, it has similar functionality to Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Google’s Assistant, enabling Orange customers to pose questions and control connected devices, including their TV set-top-box (STB). It is not yet known whether it can be activated by saying, "by Djingo"; Total Telecom lives in hope.

"Applying true artificial intelligence, Djingo learns from its users to provide them with ever more relevant answers. With Djingo, Orange becomes the first European operator to equip its customers with a virtual assistant to manage their digital world," Orange said.

Djingo was unveiled on Thursday by Orange CEO Stephane Richard at the telco’s annual Show Hello innovation showcase.

"I am proud to be able to highlight, once again, the innovative force within Orange," he said, in a statement. "An innovative force we wish to be firmly focused on the human, accessible to all, and in consequence, a source of progress."

At Show Hello, Richard also revealed that his company’s mobile bank, Orange Bank, will begin offering services in France to employees from mid-May, and to the general public from 6 July.

From launch, customers can sign up for a bank account, a free debit card, an interest-bearing savings account, and overdraft protection. The services will be available online, via mobile app, or at one of Orange’s 140 stores. Orange also plans to add credit and insurance services at a later date.

As well as traditional banking services, customers can also send money via SMS

What’s more, Orange Bank will also use Djingo to provide virtual, 24/7 assistance to customers.

"With the commercial launch of Orange Bank for the general public on 6 July, we are writing an important new chapter in the Group’s history," Richard said. "From now on, Orange is also a bank. A bank that places customer experience at the heart of its business model."