There is a trend for financial and retail companies to offer additional benefits at the checkout – whether it’s spreading payments for large purchases, insurance or charity donations. Some banks are offering ‘save the small change’ functionality, rounding the purchase up to the nearest dollar or pound and putting that change into a holding account.
I know a few people who collect small change (or a particular coin). Every day they put it in a jar, then at the end of the year they donate it to charity or buy themselves a gift. This is obviously harder to do with electronic payments at the moment.
Earlier this week I was on a panel at the ITC (Insurance Technology Congress) 2015 event. My panel was dealing specifically with Internet of Things in the insurance industry.
The event was aimed at CIOs of large, mainly commercial insurance companies. The CTO and CIOs in the room spend their time and budget keeping the lights on – i.e. keeping their systems in tip-top shape.
These CIOs and CTOs are rightly proud of their systems’ stability and availability, and until now innovation is a distant second priority. However, new technologies and technology companies are entering the market, and this conference was a joining of minds to create a plan for the future.
This morning I went to an event at Tech UK called “The Connected Home: Empowering the consumer through the Internet of Things”. Here are my notes which I managed to quickly scribble down.
Jeremy Green from Machina Research was the chairman for the morning.
In the energy retail market, smart meters increased conversion rate from 12 to 48% through more intelligent offers and improved proposition
Internet of Things (IoT) is about getting data to a user’s smartphone to view analytics and make a choice of what to do 20% of energy bills are ‘background use’ – which is background energy being used while sleeping, or not even knowing a device is on.
The topic was highly focussed on Smart Meters, mainly because of the panel at the event (smart meter suppliers). Unfortunately there was nothing about changing business models and it led to some government bashing.
I just found this infographic on the History of Credit Cards from Sainsbury’s .
It’s like it because many of us are wrapped up in the FinTech revolution, and if you start believing your own hype, you’d think cash was invented a million years ago, plastic cards 10,000 years ago and mobile phones last January. Continue reading The history of credit cards→
One of my favourite annual Internet reports is out. It’s the KPCB report, from the Venture Capital company based in the US.
It’s 196 pages of fact-packed charts, and here are my favourites.
The US makes up ‘only’ 10% of the 2.8bn online users. 73% of the World has a phone, of which 40% are smartphones. So there are 2 billion smartphones.
The top 15 Internet companies (by capitalisation) consist only of American and Chinese companies.
The only company featuring in the top 15 companies in 1995 and 2015 is Apple, which has increased its capitalisation by over 190 times! The combined capitalisation of the top 15 has increased by 141 times.
You may have seen some publicity recently how a megazillion people in the UK, especially London, all work in the FinTech sector. This publicity stems from some research commissioned by London Technology Week, a series of events taking place in London around FinTech.
The events range the full spectrum of FinTech technologies, and as a result we have clients travelling from the US over to London for LTW (London Technology Week). Most of the events are free, and even the charging ones were under £20.
I’ll be attending a few events with some colleagues going to events which clashed. I’m also speaking at Tuesday’s CSFI round table on crypto-currencies, which I think is just a coincidence that it happens to fall during LTW.
The first event of LTW15, or the headline event as it was known, was at Goldman Sachs called “Goldman Sachs Engineers – Solutions to Complex Problems at Scale”. Here are some brief notes. My apologies for speed over brevity – there will be a lot to cover this week.
Since the week before Easter I’ve been extremely busy – there was the holiday period, followed by a big family celebration, and then last Friday I managed to fall off my bicycle and break some fingers. In short… it’s been quite hectic.
During the family celebration I heard a brilliant quote from a friend, Yehuda, an IT Solution Architect, who had travelled from Israel to join us for a week. We were discussing how IT projects have become either prescriptive (detailed requirements) or business focussed (with high level requirements and leaving the solution to the supplier partner). He tells this to all his customers:
Tell me either what you want to do, or how to do it, but if you tell me both – go and do it yourself.