Couple of things concerning this: I don't talk about the usage of the Internet for entertainment purposes - because that's a given. Everybody does that. So only focusing on the differences of usage. With adults its much more official and serious -toned, while the younger age groups simply have all aspects of their life online, one way or the other.
I mention insurance and finance product comparisons as one of the uses adults have. That's linked to www.vakuutuskone.com
The end segment is about banks who do not provide XML feeds of people's own data to the people, while it would be technically simple and while they simultaneously do provide it for companies. That's linked to www.balancion.com
Banks have intentionally decided to stand in the way of progress and disable the XML feeds for private accounts. I have understood that they would have the infrastructure in place already because of SEPA and the way their backends are build. In some banks enabling the stream would be almost like flipping a switch, some others would have a small amount of work to do.
Why do they disable it then? Because they have failed in their strategic thinking. They have made the false conclusion that by being protectionist they would somehow run a better business - while in fact they are missing out on a huge opportunity for growth and new revenue generating services, entire new business models, etc. Opening up the feeds would grow the entire market and increase the size of the pie for the whole sector. Their decision is cowardly, showcases weak leadership and communicates fear and lack of self-confidence from their part.
Finland had it's first telephone line in the year 1877. Back then the printing press, the "newspaper men", were afraid of this modern form of progress; and protested against the telephone by arguing that it will kill out the print media because now news can travel faster. While in fact the opposite happened; faster communications and the telephone is a big reason why the print media grew to be bigger than ever, as gossip spread faster and people were even more focused and interested about the news they provided. The telephone increased the need for their newspaper products and grew the entire market size.
When ever I see this kind of fearful and weak resistance to change with false logic behind it, I most certainly remain unimpressed. Banks should do better than this, way better. And we as their customers should actively demand them to do so.
Banks have opened up their XML (and various other formats) feeds in Estonia. Finland is the backwater hillbillytown of progress. A country of fearful weak banks that would rather fall behind in progress than go for the huge opportunities ahead and grow their businesses. Not progressing a vital infrastructure the like the banking system makes us fall behind even on a national level, which makes it even more sad and reprehensible.
It has been interesting to see www.vakuutuskone.com a site/company I Co-Founded to increase its traffic manyfold now that the economy is in the gutter.
The site does comparisons between insurance and finance product options. Much like www.moneysupermarket.com in the UK and similar sites in other markets.
Sounds pretty logical; people feel the financial squeeze -> there's a burning need to switch to lower cost (essentially better) insurance options -> traffic on sites like Vakuutuskone (loose translation: the insurance machine) goes up manyfold.
Vakuutuskone.com is still the only site in the finnish local market that does customized comparisons between companies and their product options, all the other players in the same space rely on non-customized bulkish comparisons, often limited to price only.
It will be interesting to see how much opportunity, and what kind of opportunity, rises from the economic downwards spiral. So far the outlook on many sites is not bad.
One of the largest webstore platform providers in Finland just today reported that their customers' Xmas sales went up despite the current situation. Seems like websales is still very much alive and kicking, even if retail is slumping.
Have you heard any recessions-defying success stories lately?
Hi. My name is Taneli Tikka. This is where I preach what I practice. I'm a
serial entrepreneur and a startup activist of sorts. People usually know me
from my past and present consumer Internet service projects: Wunderkraut, TLD Registry, IRC-Galleria,
Dopplr, Muxlim, StarDoll, RunToShop, Vakuutuskone.com, and a bunch of other stuff. My
"proper" bio is behind this link. Glad to see you here, thanks for browsing