Reports Indicate That Sweden Will Stop Using Cash by 2023

Is Cash Dead?

Have you noticed that, over the years, you’ve begun to use your cards or mobile pay apps much more frequently than cash? You’re not alone in this, and this trend has been on the rise in other countries around the world. In China, for example, cash is quickly on its way out, with mobile payments doubling in the last year. Sweden has also been forgoing cash an at increasing rate over the last several years, and experts predict that it’s only a short matter of time before the country is entirely cashless.

In fact, Sweden may be completely digital in just a few years, if researchers Niklas Arvidsson of KTH and Jonas Hedman of Copenhagen School of Economics are to be believed. The pair estimate that cash will no longer be used or accepted by Swedish retailers by 2023, at the earliest.

Polling various Swedish retailers revealed that about half expect to stop accepting cash by 2025. Currently, 97 percent of all retailers accept cash payments, but only 18 percent of all transactions actually involve cash.

Card or Smartphone?

Interestingly, mobile payments are performing rather poorly. Credit and Debit cards are the primary way people pay, with mobile pay apps accounting for only 0.4 percent. It’s unclear why only a small amount of people seem to use them; it could be a matter of convenience, trust, or simply knowing how. According to Arvidsson, people are generally comfortable with paying digitally in some way, even if they never see the money leave their hands.

“We are a small country that has had a very stable democracy for a long time,” Arvidsson said. “For us, it’s no problem that the money is only visible on an internet site – we trust it.”

Consumers are largely facilitating the change, though banks have also done their part to push people away from cash, as they want to reduce the risk of robbery. Retailers share this sentiment.

“We wanted to minimise the risk of robberies and it’s quicker with the customers when they pay by card,” says bakery manager Victoria Nilsson, speaking with the BBC in September. “It’s been mainly positive reactions.”

The post Reports Indicate That Sweden Will Stop Using Cash by 2023 appeared first on Futurism.

Futurism

General Motors Will Launch 20 All-Electric Cars by 2023

Electric vehicles (EVs) are no longer just for hungry startups. A number of veteran car makers have joined the the EV race, launching various electric car concepts. Some are even promising to develop only all-electric vehicles from here on out. Now, General Motors (GM) announced on Monday its plans to launch at least 20 new EVs by 2023.

“General Motors believes in an all-electric future,” Mark Reuss, GM Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain EVP, said in a press release. “Although that future won’t happen overnight, GM is committed to driving increased usage and acceptance of electric vehicles through no-compromise solutions that meet our customers’ needs.”

electric vehicles general motors electric cars ev
Image credit: General Motors

GM plans to unveil two new all-electric cars in the next 18 months. These cars no doubt will benefit from the experience GM had developing the Chevy Bolt EV, which demonstrated the company’s dedication to reaching zero emissions. “These aren’t just words in a war of press releases,” Reuss added, according to Business Insider. A zero emissions future, GM acknowledged, “will require more than just battery electric technology.”

Instead, the car maker has been focused on both electric batteries and hydrogen fuel cells. To that end, GM introduced the Silent Utility Rover Universal Superstructure (SURUS), a four-wheel drive concept vehicle that runs on fuel cells. The SURUS’ heavy-duty truck frame is powered by two electric motors, making it an ideal zero-emission vehicle for delivery trucks and even ambulances.

The post General Motors Will Launch 20 All-Electric Cars by 2023 appeared first on Futurism.

Futurism

GM will release at least 20 all-electric cars by 2023

General Motors announced today that it will introduce two new all-electric vehicles within the next 18 months, the first of at least 20 new EVs that the automaker will launch by 2023. GM also renewed its commitment to hydrogen fuel cell technology, a clean fuel concept that still needs major infrastructure upgrades before it can become a viable alternative.

At a press conference in Detroit this morning, GM’s executive vice president of global product development Mark Reuss said that the company was “committed to an all-electric future,” but cautioned that it wasn’t going to happen “by flipping a switch.”

“These aren’t just words in a war of press releases,” Reuss added. “We are far…

Continue reading…

The Verge – All Posts

Analysts Predict That Artificial Intelligence Will Be a $14 Billion Industry by 2023

Exponential Growth

A recent report asserts that the artificial intelligence (AI) industry will reach a compound annual growth rate of 17.2 percent by 2023. The market is set to swell to a whopping $ 14.2 billion over the next six years, up from just $ 525 million in 2015.

Understanding Machine Learning [INFOGRAPHIC]
Click to View Full Infographic

Natural language processing technology is set to be a huge contributor to this growth. This tech is being adopted rapidly, particularly by financial institutions, because it can carry out customer service transactions and answer common questions in the place of human employees.

As for geography, North America is expected hold the majority of the AI industry’s market share by 2023, but Europe and the Asia-Pacific region will see significant growth thanks to the rapid pace of urbanization in some areas, increasing use of smartphones, and robust automotive sectors.

The Time Is Now

Inevitably, any transition away from human labor could result in fewer jobs. The big question is whether AI and automation can produce enough new jobs to ensure that the people being replaced aren’t left unemployed.

According to the World Economic Forum, automated systems are on track to replace more then five million workers by 2020. In the U.S., some have predicted that 7 percent of jobs will be lost to automation by 2025, and a recent study found that as many as 10 million jobs in Great Britain could be swallowed up by automation over the next 10 years.

While we still have reasons to be optimistic that AI and automation could create jobs rather than just take them away, that’s not likely to happen organically — we need to make some big societal changes to ensure the benefits of AI outweigh the negatives.

These changes might mean some sort of adjustment to academic curriculum that takes into account the types of jobs that students are likely to hold 10 years from now. Universal basic income (UBI) could also be the answer, giving citizens a way to ensure their basic needs are met even after they are no longer needed at their job.

AI and automation are no longer the wave of the future — the technology is already here, and these systems are being implemented more broadly than even before. The world of work is changing, and the way society functions needs to change along with it.

The post Analysts Predict That Artificial Intelligence Will Be a $ 14 Billion Industry by 2023 appeared first on Futurism.

Futurism