2017 was an impressive year for the fintech industry. Fintech firms highlighted their significance with great gusto. At the time of demonetization in 2016, the country was in the middle of financial instability, leaving the customers marooned without cash and businesses without capital. This was when a myriad of fintech startups came to the rescue.
Today, the entire sector is on the cusp of driving exponential growth in India due to digital payments and innovation in digital loan disbursement platforms.
2018 is anticipated to be a great year for the fintech industry. Here are the top trends that would be major game changers:
Blockchain technology with its digital public ledger can enhance speed, productivity, and transparency. It is on the verge of becoming the next disruption in the fintech space. This technology finds utilization in the field of digital currency exchange, cross-border payments, money transfers, etc.
India has a long way to go in its effort to build an efficient and comprehensive financial system. To achieve that, technology will be the prime source of interest to financial products and services of the future. As this sector expands, increased data security and privacy will be the key areas to lay focus on. 2018 is the year we anticipate Blockchain being implemented on a wide scale.
Peer-To-Peer (P2P) Lending
Peer-to-Peer (P2P) lending is a platform for borrowers and individual investors who are willing to lend. All P2P players are known to the banking regulator, giving them access to authentic records from credit bureaus, hence, guaranteeing better decision making. P2P platforms get the recognition due to high Return on Investment (ROI), efficiency, and low lending rates. Moreover, new guidelines set by the RBI will give reliability to P2P platforms.
Also, driven by the goal of democratizing financial services and targeting robust growth, fintech startups are likely to introduce new models for lending, particularly in the P2P lending space.
Near Field Communication (NFC) is changing the way payments are made. It is a short-range wireless technology that carries out secure, two-way interactions between electronic devices. Also, as several wearable devices are entering the market, it will be interesting to see the new ways in which fintechs can leverage this. Interestingly, in 2018 we may see mainstream success for fintech-powered wearables.
Machine Learning and User Experience
In 2018, there could be widespread adoption of new regression models like Machine Learning. Machine Learning is a branch of Artificial Intelligence used by fintech players to get a comprehensive understanding of customer behavior, expectations, and responses. At the same time, Machine Learning will be integrated with big data to anticipate customer demand.
Bharat QR can be leveraged by offline and online merchants to accept digital payments through an application. The biggest advantage of Bharat QR is its interoperability. This makes it much more effective than other QR solutions, which function within wallets or certain card networks. In tier 2 and tier 3 cities, Bharat QR can be used by offline businesses and small merchants.
Well, fin-tech startups are planning to bring a personalized experience with the help of customer-centric information. Everything will been done through automated algorithms that examine historic transactions and preferences of customers. This helps them to provide an evolved customer experience. There are going to be several developments in this sphere in 2018.
Explosion of Chatbots
Multiple banks have implemented chatbots for unified customer communication and query-solving. In 2018, more chatbots will be deployed to enhance the quality of interactions and improve decision-making. They are likely to be used for online customers looking for quick solution to their queries. Additionally, 2018 may be the year where a voice-based assistants come into effect.
Interestingly, ePayLater is also emerging a leading innovator in this particular field. ePayLater offers a personalised chatbot ‘Niki’ which truly simplifies utility bill payments, recharge, hotel bookings and much more with just a tap!
All said and done, the year will be instrumental for fintechs as private players are expected to make big investments in these segments.