Matrix of Potential

The pace of technological innovation can at times seems daunting, but technology is simply a means to an end, not an end in itself.

To those of a certain age, the very term ‘artificial intelligence’ (AI) was once the preserve of science fiction. Now that it’s science fact, how do we embrace it?

In one of our recent podcasts, Andrew Flegg, Chief Technology Officer at Alpha, explains that firms need to understand the art of the possible. AI is only of value to a business if it’s adding value – and return on investment is the measure.

This type of technology is already being used in the industry for credit decisions, predicting delinquency, fraud detection and predicting residual value.

At the opposite end of the AI spectrum, an autonomous electric car recently drove 230 miles from Cranfield in Bedfordshire to Nissan's manufacturing plant in Sunderland – a case of ‘drive home EV’.  Proof of concept undoubtedly, but it may be some before we get to ride in one.

While paradigm-shifting technologies like fully autonomous cars are looming on the horizon, humbler innovations like 5G are already here. This is tangible change.

Part of the 5G high speed data highway may result in your fridge calling you at work to demand that you bring home more cheese, but the same connectivity could also revolutionise the provision of asset finance. By connecting assets to the internet, lenders could collect all kinds of data on their asset’s whereabouts and usage – perhaps heralding greater asset security and facilitating pay-per-use models of leasing.

And what about the way Generation Netflix consume goods and services? They are already avowed users rather than owners, and those who use more technologically advanced the assets may well find that leasing is an efficient way to stay ahead of the creeping obsolescence.

Technology is opportunity.

Published 17 Feb 2020

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