Close to 60% of US consumers believe that traditional banks will cease to exist within their lifetime as they are failing to both meet customers needs and to innovate. A huge 75% of respondents to a Blumberg Capital survey say that fintech gives them more power over their finances, while two-thirds say fintech provides access to services previously available only to the wealthy and that such tech will help everyone be better off financially.
The main sources of future smartphone growth? Think India, along with other emerging markets such as Nigeria and Indonesia where adoption will be driven by ongoing declines in device costs and rising incomes. Expect several low-income countries – ie GDP/capita below $10,000 – to have smartphone take-up rates of 60–70% by 2020, similar to most advanced regions, according to the Global Mobile Trends report from GSMA Intelligence.
The European Fintech Alliance has had its first get-together in Berlin since setting up shop back in June this year. But while its primary aim is to supply first-hand information to its fintech-only members on relevant political and regulatory developments, it is also clearly on something of a Silicon Valley-inflected, crusading mission, writes Steve Mullins*.
Kodak may be out of the film stock business but it’s looking to make a mobile play with the launch of a new smartphone. The Ektra smartphone is targeting keen photographers with its 21 megapixel fast-focus camera with DSLR functionality and 4K video capture, along with a price tag of £499. The phone features a Super 8 app so that users can create videos in the style of old-fashioned Kodak film stock.
Fewer than half of online ads served in the UK managed to meet minimum viewability thresholds in the third-quarter, meaning that advertisers (though ultimately consumers) are spending £615 million for nothing at all. And this despite the fact that the threshold is set at an extremely low one second, according to a report from ad verification company Meetrics.
Tesla has announced that all vehicles currently on its production line will have the requisite hardware for full self-driving capability. That means eight surround cameras with 360-degree vision, 12 ultrasonic sensors to detect both hard and soft objects at nearly twice the distance of its prior system, plus forward-facing radar capable of seeing through heavy rain, fog, dust ‘and even the car ahead’.
Over half of US business travellers in the third-quarter of this year used ride-hailing services, marking the first time that such offerings make up a majority of ground transport expenses, according to Certify metrics. Uber and Lyft snagged 52% of road transportation market share in the period, up from 49% in the previous quarter, and from 34% year-on-year.
What’s happening with Aquila, Facebook’s global connectivity play? asks Steve Mullins. The social network’s carbon fibre drone, which boasts an impressive 40-metre wingspan (think Boeing 737), took the air for the first time earlier this year for a 96-minute flight to great excitement, though the long-endurance craft has gone off the radar since and remains very much a Silicon Valley work-in-progress.