These days it’s virtually impossible to manage your money without technology, compared to a decade ago. The internet, smartphones and tablets are perhaps some of the innovations that have made this possible. But just when we think we have reached the limit further innovations continue to spring up.
Now financial technology or fintech describes a business that aims at providing financial services by making use of software and modern technology. According to fintechweekly.com, fintech companies currently compete with banks in providing financial services and solutions. They basically live on the cutting edge of technology and innovation, by creating fintech trends.
Today millennials and young people dominate Africa’s population. This demographic constantly seeks better and easier ways of doing things, financial services inclusive. This sector apparently continues to attract lots of investment. And plenty of startups are now playing there as a result.
Disrupt Africa, in its “Finnovating for Africa: Exploring the African Fintech Startup Ecosystem Report 2017” confirms 301 fintech startups. $93 million worth of funding had been secured as at June 2017. In addition over 40% of the startups focus on providing payments and remittances solutions.
Enough said, let’s dig into nine awesome fintech trends without further delay:
Fintech Trend 1 – Wearables/watch Banking
ebankIT.com currently promotes an offering called wearables or watch banking. With this app you can make easy transfers and payments from your wrist. You can also find the nearest ATMs and branches and enjoy 24/7 access to your account balance.
Watchbanking is currently available for Android, Tizen and Apple Smartwatches, integrated with iOS and Android Operating Systems. Check out the video below:
HDFC Bank of India have launched a WatchBanking App for the Apple Watch. This app offers an intuitive banking experience through a wearable device that takes banking on-the -move to a whole new level.
Fintech Trend 2 – Cleaning on Demand
Cleaning on demand is another service that is gaining ground in countries like South Africa. Domestly is basically an app based service that assigns a cleaner, also called Personal Home Hero to clean your home. In addition the app allows users to schedule and change cleaning times, and select payment methods. Users can also cancel/reschedule. It’s important to add here that all cleaners are registered and background checked. Check out how domestly works below:
Fintech Trend 3 – Mobile Electricity
Imagine using the airtime on your mobile phone to pay for solar electricity? That’s exactly what this trend’s about. This solution, called Mobile Electricity is a partnership in Nigeria between Lumos and MTN. all subscribers are issued with a Yellow box which provides solar power to power lights, fans and other small domestic appliances.
Subscribers essentially register with MTN. They proceed to pay for the mobile electricity kit. Customers basically choose from the various subscription plans available. ranging from as low as 5 days to 1 year. Most noteworthy is the fact that payment is made via MTN airtime. The video below shows how it works:
Fintech Trend 4 – Reduced bank charges when transferring money abroad
Transferwise basically helps you remit money to foreign countries at the true exchange rate, devoid of hidden charges. The sheer frustration experienced when trying to send money to other countries led to the development of this solution. While banks traditionally make fictitious claims of charging “zero commissions” the founders of transferwise came up with a solution that reduces charges substantially. TransferWise thus lets people send money abroad at the lowest possible true cost. Rob Rawson of Timedoctor.com uses transferwise extensively. Check out his in-depth review and the video below:
Fintech Trend 5 – Managing multiple bank accounts
Do you face challenges managing your money stored in several bank accounts? Are you using several mobile banking apps for banking transactions? Now you can manage several accounts by using the remita mobile application.
Imagine viewing all your accounts, from different banks on one screen. Now you can easily access and centrally manage your bank account balances with remita’s multi-bank balances feature. Remita truly makes banking less stressful. Just the stress of having to remember multiple passwords makes this app worth considering.
Fintech Trend 6 – Bringing creative projects to life
Are you looking for funding to execute your creative ideas? Have you tried, albeit unsuccessfully to raise funds within your network? Now you can tap into funding opportunities using kickstarter. This application helps artists, musicians and other creative people find the resources and support to make their ideas a reality. Members of the community have supported thousands of projects to date.
Furthermore every artist retains complete control over their work. Kickstarter, in addition avails them of the opportunity to share their work with others.
Fintech Trend 7 – Providing banking services (Peer to peer lending)
Owning a bank is probably one of my most important financial goals. But can you imagine individuals giving out loans to borrowers from their savings? Could you possibly imagine individuals performing banking services?
Ratesetter is basically a financial service that lets people loan their savings to individual borrowers. It provides peer to peer lending services and cuts the banks out as a result. They essentially match people looking to invest their funds with those who require it at an agreed rate of return. Most noteworthy is the fact that they don’t charge any fees, with a 100% track record of the funds being repaid.
Fintech Trend 8 – Cut out the broker while trading stocks
Middlemen usually make things more expensive. While the broker has traditionally played an important role, the founders of robinhood have created their online stockbroking portal. This portal totally eradicates trading commissions and prunes down other costs that make stock brokerage fees high. The fact that everything is done from your smartphone is most noteworthy. Check out the review:
Fintech Trend 9 – Artifical intelligence in customer service
Fingenius lets major institutions save hundreds of millions of pounds on customer relations management, especially call centres. It’s rightly described as “Siri for banks” by Crunchbase. This is because the company has created advanced artificial customer relations. The system is able to field a huge and complicated range of questions from customers without human input.
FinGenius offers a range of artificial intelligence and natural language processing solutions to the finance industry. Its platform automatically understands banks’ complex data and delivers it to customers and employees in a user-friendly format. Furthermore, end users can ask anything in the language of their choice by typing or verbally expressing their message and FinGenius will find suitable answers.
In conclusion – fintech trends
Many opportunities still abound to push the frontiers of fintech even further. While fintech continues to generate investment I believe much innovation can still be unearthed. Let’s further tap into the benefits of fintech to makeAfrica a better place.