Less than a week left for 2018 and what a year it has been! It was certainly eventful for the Embily teams. Both Bangkok and Pattaya teams have moved into bigger and nicer offices this year. Embily has signed a new partnership with BIG and we’ve had great fun in sponsoring a local ice-hockey team for a few events throughout the year!
So, what has the world of Financial Technology offered us over the past 12 months? Well, according to FinTech Global, by July 2018, the global FinTech sector already had managed to see over $41.7 billion USD invested across deals worldwide. Some reports even estimate a much higher amount by the end of the third quarter of 2018. Let’s take a look at what some of the best of FinTech as well as technology, in general, has had to offer;
Blockchain and Cryptocurrency
I think we can all expect to see at least a mention of either Blockchain or Crypto on an article like this. Maybe even a mention for both. But yes, during the last couple of weeks of December 2017 and the first few weeks of 2018, Bitcoin and Crypto saw its prices at an all-time high, almost reaching $20k USD per BTC and hovering above the $15k mark for a few weeks there. Even after the quick drop after January 2018, people from all over continued working on applications for Bitcoin and Blockchain.
All around the world the people still invested and continuously investing, ranging from small to big companies, governments and even banks themselves. It was clear that Blockchain and Crypto weren’t going to die off as many would suggest. In fact, in the first half of 2018, we saw almost a billion USD invested globally. Which was already more than what was invested in the entirety of 2017.
Mobile banking has seen a large increase in users over the past 12 months. With the rise of digital-only banks over the past couple of years, we are starting to see more and more users do their banking almost entirely on their mobile phones. In fact, Citi conducted a 2018 mobile banking study and found that over 80% of people actually manage their finances over their mobile.
I can personally say that I’m one of the people that manage most of my finances via my own smartphone.
AI has made some amazing advancements over the past few years, but it seems that 2018 has been a highlight for all things AI. If you’re an avid video gamer, you may be familiar with the online game DOTA 2. This year, the OpenAI research managed to build an AI that would compete as well as best some of the top players in the world.
And it’s not only video games! Tesla has had greater success in 2018 than it did in previous years with their cars, which include an auto-pilot system commanded by AI. Let’s see what the future holds for AI. Are you ready to welcome your new robot overlords?
Cyber Security like all other aspects of technology, is always evolving. It would seem that every year or so, a new trend of threats emerge which ultimately cause the security industry to shift their focus. Once upon a time, malware and ransomware were an infestation that ran rampant. But nowadays, the security is all about your own private data protection.
With tech-giants such as Facebook and Google constantly under fire for “stealing” or using our private information without our consent, it seems that the new trend in cybersecurity is to make sure data breaches are stopped and our data secure. Because let’s face it, you don’t want to be waking up to finding out someone has stolen all your financial details.
Overall 2018 has been a great year for technology. Each year we get to see all sorts of improvements all across the technology sectors. However, I feel like 2018, in particular, has been a major period for progression as well as a wide shift of focus from previous tech-related spotlights. For 2019, we can only wait to see what the year will bring us and where our next focuses will lie.
Until then, however, the Embily team would like to wish everybody a lovely holiday and a happy new year. We’ll be seeing you again all very soon!
Cover illustration artist orestART, DeviantArt
End illustration artist MinnaSundberg, DeviantArt