The fintech progression in the latest years has marked a difference in the technology world.
During the first years of the 21st century, we have witnessed growth in the financial sector in the form of financial literacy, new processes and automated services. But the financial revolution is far from coming to an end. Given the above, in this article, we have gathered some of the most relevant trends we are expecting to watch in 2019.
1. Mobile Banking:
One of the most prominent trends will be mobile banking. The factors behind the growth of mobile banking can largely be attributed to convenience, accessibility and functionality.
Convenience: have a branch locally parade has been superseded by the opportunity to have the means to carry out transactions at the user’s fingertips.
Accessibility: currently, 65% of the world population have a smartphone, with this percentage rising, meaning that more customers will have access to mobile banking apps – either at home or on the go.
Functionality: banks add increased functionality to apps every few months, becoming a viable alternative for many more types of transaction than ever before. Now, most providers offer the possibility of setting up new payments and managing direct debits.
2. Blockchain Adoption:
If we have to choose one of the finest and most helpful fintech innovations, there is no better choice than the blockchain technology.
Decentralized in nature, the blockchain is based on a digital ledger, which has been distributed among various users, ensuring that no single user has complete access to data. Once the record has entered the ledger, it is then impossible to change it.
For fintech, it ensures accountability, via immutable audit trails, and efficiency, via the elimination of intermediary steps, compressing transactions and settlements processes to a few minutes or seconds, and avoiding the unnecessary paperwork with the creation of the digital ledger, storing all the records.
Through the blockchain, the authentication of the identity of a person who is getting involved in banking processes such as loaning, investments, or simple transactions, will become simple. In the next years, all the major banks and fintech payment processing systems across the world will adopt the blockchain technology to reduce costs and increase the speed of transactions.
Cryptocurrency as a payment method will grow as more customers get educated on the advantages of using digital currency.
3. IPOs VS Collaboration:
Although in the past years, financial companies find no luck in going public, facing share prices trembling, in 2019, we can expect some IPOs (Robinhood? Credit Karma?).
Along with IPOs, we can also see M&A deals taking place with an increase in partnerships between corporates, fintech companies and third parties to deliver an improved experience for end-users, and a wider array of services, integrating mobile wallets, blockchain, video chat, and data analytics with existing offerings.
4. Cloud And Quantum Computing:
Cloud and quantum computing offers assistance to banks and other financial institutions to obtain complete digitalization, regulatory compliance, and more security. Cloud solutions are offering banks a solution to be more visible and accessible to end customers.
According to a report issued by Accenture, entitled “Cloud and Clear,” financial institutions are transforming into more digitalized platforms with the construction of cloud platforms.
The cloud offers a way for banks to quickly develop new applications, add new online services and improve customer experience. Indeed, offerings such as mobile banking would be impossible without the cloud. Also, data-intensive applications such as artificial intelligence (AI) and complex data analytics that are increasingly important to banks, are typically cloud based and indeed some of the most advanced AI technology available is now embedded in public cloud platforms.
For 2019, we are expecting banking institutions to work more with IT specialists to achieve a comprehensive IT architecture on cloud platforms. Along with cloud, with the adoption of quantum computing, banks and financial institution will gain the desired speed to deliver their products to the end customers in an improved manner.
We have already seen the implementation of IBM’s quantum technology at Barclays and JP Morgan. As the efficiency of quantum computing is getting popular among other banking platforms, more banks will move towards quantum technology to gain efficiency and speed up operations.
5. Biometric Technology:
We have discussed a variety of advantages we can have by implementing technology. However, there are drawbacks too. With the increased dependency of financial institutions on digital technology, cyber-attack and security breaches have become common. Given this, for all of us security is still one the most pertinent factors and top priorities.
Year by year, the PIN number is becoming always more obsolete as banks turn to biometric authentication technology, such as voice recognition, fingerprint, and vein pattern. Under this point of view, biometric technology can help financial and banking institutions maintain account safety and transaction security, which is crucial to have a sound financial environment. Biometric authentication is already used in a variety of scenarios, including withdrawing cash from ATMs, proving identity when contacting their bank via phone and authenticating mobile bank apps. A combination of face and voice will also fulfil Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) measures when accessing web-based eBanking services.
For 2019, it is highly expected that we go ahead in the security quest. To this end, iris authentication technology is also progressing.