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Innovation in Financial Services

Innovation in Financial Services

A discussion of trends in innovation management within financial institutions, and the key processes, technology and cultural shifts driving innovation.

The FCUK effect

10 September 2013  |  2654 views  |  0

They say there are three types of reality: (a) how we perceive a given object or situation, (b) how other people see it and (c) what that object and situation really is. Those three "realities" never align...

With human beings, judgement is always "clouded" by one of the numerous biases, most of which we are not even aware of. The most relevant to what I am about to say are Post-purchase rationalisation, Observational Selection Bias and Bandwagon Effect.

During the past few months (hm, years come to think of it), there has been a lot of debate about NFC. I won't go into details of all the pro and con arguments (founded and not), it doesn't matter. Suffice it to say, the market is at least divided as to the future of NFC.

Today, Apple will be announcing new iPhone models. One of them could have NFC interface. Whilst it doesn't really matter (at all) whether or not Apple introduces NFC, if they do then the market's perception of that technology will change. Dramatically. Overnight.

All of a sudden, everyone will imagine 50% of the US influential crowd wielding NFC-capable iPhones, waving them around here and there. Boom! NFC becomes legit, transforming from the ugly "Nobody F*** Cares" duckling into a promising "New Financial Creativity" swan. Yet, by that time absolutely nothing would have changed - technology, infrastructure and UX-wise.

We've seen it all before, many times: certain tech or business model being rejected or laughed at ("Post-purchase rationalisation"), some big names then adopting it ("Observational Selection Bias"), followed by the march of lemmings, wannabes and metoos ("Bandwagon Effect").

What's the cause of that "Apple" effect? Simples! Apple never introduces a tech for its own sake - it's always about "insanely great" user experience. After we sampled simplicity, ease and elegance of that, it's hard to go back.

So, will they or won't they? The true question is: what new UX will Apple reveal to the world using the old boring NFC (and biometrics)? We'll soon find out.

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