Muscat: One of the major challenges for Oman is to not just use innovations to drive the economy but to merge said innovations, an expert said.
Professor Luca de Carli, a tech expert from Switzerland said that his home country and the Sultanate had a lot in common, adding that this included integration of e-services.
“Integration of e-services is one particular issue. You have so many apps on your phone, which you use once a month for a few minutes each to pay for domestic water, electricity etc.
“The plan is to bring all of these e-services under one umbrella and make paying for these disparate services easier. For Oman, maybe Omantel can do just that. The challenge is to use Information and Communications Technology (ICT) efficiently,” de Carli said.
He added that to be successful in today’s economy one needs to understand the young generation and deliver the services that they desire.
“One needs to notice the changing nature of media consumption of the young generation. Social media needs to be a part of analytical model that you develop to predict how the market is going to behave.
“For this, you need to know the needs and location of your potential customers. I know that a lot has been said about data and privacy on social media, but you need to convince consumers that look, allow us access to this data to serve you better,” he said.
Crypto-currency the future?
Luca de Carli said that despite being a marginal phenomenon, crypto-currencies could become mainstream in the future.
“The day is not far when all the major eateries like Subway and McDonalds would accept bitcoin and other crypto-currencies. Maybe, even here in Oman. I know that right now, they are not much compared to the main currencies, value-wise. But it is very likely that all of this change very soon.
“There is also a downside, of course. There is undeniably a bubble aspect to it. But once the confidence builds and more people start using crypto-currencies, it’ll pick up,” the expert remarked.