COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated technology adoption



The COVID-19 pandemic has led to an acceleration in the adoption of various technologies, as businesses go online and consumers change their behaviors, experts said at the Gulf Blockchain Summit.

Taking place in Dubai, experts at the event noted on Monday that, against the backdrop of the new digital era and the emergence of disruptive technologies, obviously boosted by the region’s economic development and the Covid-19 pandemic , the Gulf States have successfully developed an advanced technological infrastructure through in-depth research and piloting real use cases.

“Since the start of the pandemic, the Gulf has truly demonstrated a leadership position by bringing together a focal point as a blockchain hub,” said Juwan Lee, president of NexChange Group. “The reality is that the ecosystem has really been strategic foresight for many years.”

The experts also highlighted how the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia have been at the forefront of research and implementation of blockchain in banking and financial services in chain management. supply and in the education sector. This was especially evident when the UAE government launched the Emirates Blockchain 2021 strategy in April 2018. The strategy aims to capitalize on blockchain technology to turn 50% of government transactions into the blockchain platform by here. 2021. Technology will help save time, effort and resources and help people process their transactions when and where it suits their lifestyle and work. By adopting this technology, the UAE government hopes to save more than 11 billion dirhams in transactions and documents processed regularly, as well as 77 million man hours per year.

Katie Lau, director of European and US regions, key account, Huobi Global, said the pandemic has accelerated the development of technology and resulted in a wave of companies bringing their operations online. The pandemic has also had a major impact on the consumption habits of people online and the demand for electronic payments, especially during lockdowns.

“Among Generation Z, Generation X and Generation Y, 61% are the most likely to switch to a fully digital banking in the future for services such as 24/7 accessibility to banking services, the branchless banking experience instead of the crowded branch visits and ease of banking, all of which are provided by a digital bank, ”she said.

She also noted that convenient and fast digital interactions are quickly becoming critical factors for young consumers, which is why they are ready to move from traditional banks to new age neo-banks for a digital-only banking experience. “Neobanks, including Chime, are raising the bar for customer expectations and increasingly making inroads into various markets around the world, such as India.”

She highlighted Bank ABC’s success by launching ila Bank in 2019 with a customer-centric, digital-centric strategy that has revolutionized the retail banking landscape in Bahrain and the region. The mobile-only digital bank won two awards, “Best Consumer Digital Bank” and “Best Mobile Banking App” in Bahrain, at the World’s Best Consumer Digital Bank Awards in the Middle East in 2021 by Global Finance.

Another key trend that is growing in popularity is NFTs. Estelle Ohayon, CEO of NFT BAZL, described the NFT revolution as a “social revolution” which opened the doors for everyone to access the art market. “Everything we have done with technology was aimed at adding dimension to life. If you look at NFTs, it’s about adding layers and improving reality. We deepen it; we give people a deeper version of the physical. I think there is no limit to what we can do.

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