Uber-Style Disruptive Technology Emerging In Australia Including No-Bank Loans, Instant Delivery And Drone Deliveries

23/12/2015 3:19 PM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST
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Close up of a happy business woman holding Australian cash. She is dressed in a corporate business suit, and is smiling and looking at camera. Studio shot on a white background.

As ride-sharing app Uber begins to become legal in states and territories across Australia, futurists are looking to the next big disruptive technology set to transform the nation in 2016.

Futurist Ross Dawson told The Huffington Post Australia one area in for a big shake up was banking.

"Traditionally, if you had some money, you could put it in the bank and they'd give you interest, and if you needed money, you'd borrow from the bank with an associated borrowing rate.

"But there's a big difference between the bank's savings rate and borrowing rate so people are increasingly cutting out the middle man."

In what's called peer to peer banking, everyday people loan their savings to borrowers, and they pocket the interest.

"The idea is they get a slightly better return on their savings and the people borrowing get a slightly better rate," Dawson said.

While the concept is relatively unknown in Australia, Dawson said there were several successful models overseas that mitigated risk in different ways, including UK institution Society One.

"Some, you know the person borrowing -- maybe they're a friend, or part of your school alumni or in your community. Others will split several loans across several lenders to mitigate the risk of a bad loan."

"Australia is ripe for peer-to-peer banking."

Another area of banking set for a shakeup is currency exchange, with Dawson saying several peer-to-peer currency exchanges are popping up in Australia including Currency Fair and Transfer Wise.

Dawson said Uber had inspired other disruptions in the transport space, including couriers and businesses needing deliveries.

"Uber works because there's a latent demand and a supply of people willing to drive someone here or there for some money.


"In the same way, there are businesses looking at people who are going to drive home from work, and they can take a delivery with them and drop it off on their way."

He said the demand for couriers was being driven by a need for instantaneous deliveries from websites.

"Online shopping is the major development in the retail space, but physical shops aren't going anywhere," Dawson said.

"When you look to that boundary between online and in-store shopping, one way online loses out to shops is the fact that you can instantaneously get your product in a store.

"One of the ways online stores are trying to combat that is with super-fast delivery. We're talking half day delivery. There's one store in San Francisco doing one-hour deliveries in the city."

While the concept of mum-and-dad couriers works in the city, what about regional areas?

"Drones," Dawson said.

drone delivery

"There's some legislation that has to change to get drone deliveries happening, but Amazon is pushing in that space, and I think it's telling Google chose to do its first drone delivery trial in Australia.

"Australia is perfect for drone delivery because it is so spread out once you move outside the urban areas."

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