Some countries have regained normal life a year since the pandemic began, while others have seen resurging cases and renewed lockdowns. When vaccinations are distributed, several people are also unsure when life will return to normal, but one thing is certain: the pandemic has had a significant effect on many sectors.
CBI insights looked at some of the trends that have been sparked or intensified by the advent of Covid-19, and how those developments are expected to affect the way we live, function, study, and rest even after the pandemic has passed — as well as how those innovations are likely to evolve in the future.
Data, wearables, and virtual reality are now being used to make healthcare more accessible
To contend with strained hospital infrastructure and the risk of infection, patients and healthcare providers quickly embraced telehealth systems and online health surveillance. Owing to social distancing and lockdown orders, mental health facilities and gyms are unavailable. Whereas remote technologies in healthcare and related fields have previously been greeted with skepticism, this shifted in the aftermath of the epidemic.
In 2018, for example, 18 percent of American doctors said they had treated a patient using telemedicine. According to a new poll, nearly half of all US doctors (48%) said they treated patients practically during the pandemic. Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, 60 percent of American users said they were more likely to pursue tele-health facilities.
Research: A boom in remote work has accelerated the introduction of digital infrastructure
Employers touted job flexibility and online jobs as big advantages when hiring workers in 2019, despite the US’s record low unemployment rate. These patterns became necessary when social distancing policies restricted people to their homes.
Productivity software development is helped by remote work. Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, businesses saw teleconferencing technologies like Skype and Zoom as optional extras. The use of these tools increased rapidly after remote work policies were implemented as part of sheltering in place. Over the next five years, video conferencing is predicted to account for 50% of the remote job market, up from 10% to 15% now. Any industry had to adjust to the demands of a newly dispersed population. Zoom’s stock price jumped almost 400% in 2020 as demand for its service skyrocketed.
Technology and web material have made the education obsolete
For years, schools and colleges have been upgrading their facilities to provide automated solutions to the classroom, prompting experts to forecast a $350 billion market value for the Ed-tech sector by 2025, far before the pandemic.
The arrival of Covid-19 necessitated a much more rapid growth. As of March 25, over 91,000 public and private schools in the United States have closing, affecting more than 50 million pupils. Around the globe, teachers, administrators, pupils, and parents scrambled to find answers that would allow learning to proceed. Education is also defined as countercyclical, with demand rising during economic downturns. In ways that are impossible to totally change direction until the pandemic subsides, remote learning technologies and online classes bolstered the thesis.
Retail: Grocery stores have joined the e-commerce ranks, making shopping much more convenient
Covid-19 may have exposed the flaws in just-in-time logistics, which are common with supermarket retailers, but it has provided new ways for businesses to address those flaws. Surging demand in space drives technological innovations and Employment.
Prior to Covid-19, large retailers such as Amazon and Walmart led the online supermarket industry, which was experiencing rapid growth. However, it only made up about 6% of the total food retail sector.
Customer service: Conversational AI transforms the customer experience
Sectors likely to see significant growth in chatbot use include banking, healthcare, and retail. Prior to the Covid-19 epidemic, conversational agents were heavily used to supplement customer service roles in the finance, healthcare, and retail industries. By 2023, chatbots is expected to save these industries more than $11 billion.
If the number of online orders grows and customers explore new ways to buy products and services online, businesses looking to improve their e-commerce capabilities will focus more heavily on conversational agents in the future. While most retail and banking chatbots are designed to assist customers, JPMorgan has been testing the limits of what bots can do in its back-end operations. Since 2017, the corporation has used chatbots to automate repetitive operations that were previously performed by administrative workers.
Demand for contactless payment solutions is accelerating digital adoption
In a post-Covid environment, regulation would have a big impact on how opportunities in the fintech space grow. According to a World Bank Group poll, financial regulators have expanded current innovation programmes in the aftermath of Covid-19. South Korea announced plans to temporarily relax fintech rules in March 2020 as part of an attempt to speed up the country’s economic growth as the virus faded.
Until Covid-19, contactless payment services were on the rise. As early as 2014, Apple, Google, and Samsung started to integrate virtual wallets into their smartphone products. Amazon has also been experimenting with contactless payment methods in its physical stores.
Contactless payment solutions have also become more common with small businesses. Although 40% of small businesses stayed closed as a result of the pandemic, 27% of those who did continue to allow on-premise payments saw an uptick in contactless payments made via smartphones and contactless cards.
Increasing investment due to increased internet penetration and data generation
Personal monitoring equipment became a crucial weapon in the fight against the coronavirus’s spread. By 2025, the global video monitoring industry is projected to reach $75 billion, up from $50 billion in 2020.
Data from mobile providers, mobile applications, and credit card firms are used by governments from South Korea to Israel to India to monitor the movements of potentially contaminated citizens. Users in China were asked to enter their national identity numbers and names into a smartphone application for touch tracing. However, in Europe and the United States, there has long been a backlash toward the retention of personal data. The GDPR’s passage in the EU in 2017 was a win for privacy advocates. However, as the severity of the danger faced by Covid-19 grew clearer, monitoring technologies became more broadly recognised as a means of tracking and mitigating virus spread.
After Covid, What Comes Next: Continuation Or Backlash?
Many employers, for example, have resisted the demands of remote work and schooling, particularly where working parents and young children are present.
If consumer opinion shifts in the opposite direction, many sectors could see resurgence:
- Concerts, seminars, and talks that take place in a certain location.
- Restaurants are a kind of establishment (although they will need a substantial infusion of capital to recover losses).
- Experiential activities such as wine and paint stores, dancing, and so on.