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  • Cheryl Tan

Tech Round Up Week 4 June 2020: New OCBC Healthcare App, Google Commits $175M to Equality and More

Updated: Aug 20, 2021

OCBC Bank has launched Healthpass, its new healthcare app. A collaboration with seven medical groups, the app provides access to more than 100 general practitioners and specialists to address the healthcare needs of all Singapore residents over the age of 18, including non-OCBC Bank customers.

Patients are able to access their digital Medical Certificates (MC), clinic invoices and laboratory results from the clinics visited securely through the app. App users can also add their credit or debit card to the app, enabling digital payments for clinic visits and more.

Additionally, there is a wellness shop in the app that gives users access to more than 100 merchant offers for wellness products and other preventive care services. Consultation fees are kept flat at S$20 for each telehealth and an in-clinic visit to a GP during normal operating hours. There will be no standard time limit for the video consultation service.

Amidst the global pandemic, consumers have been forced to go digital. A recent Mastercard survey shows that consumers in the Asia Pacific are rapidly going digital with purchases of everything and it seems that this trend will continue even after the pandemic passes.

According to the Salesforce Shopping Index, digital commerce revenues grew 20% globally in the first quarter of 2020 from a year earlier. This highlights the necessity for businesses, especially small and medium enterprises, to move into e-commerce and have an online presence even after the pandemic. 

A recent Visa study states that 3 in 4 consumers in Southeast Asia now use contactless payments more frequently than they did two years ago. The survey also concludes that Singapore is leading the usage of contactless card and mobile contactless payments in SEA.

The future of commerce is driven by innovation, with emerging technological trends such as voice command, zero checkout, smart mirrors and virtual reality. We can’t wait for this new and exciting future!

In an effort to promote racial equity, Google will be spending more than $175 million to finance black-owned businesses and support black entrepreneurs. Additionally, Google has plans to make changes to support black employees and black representation. This is announced at a time when many companies across the US have relooked at their businesses to improve policies for their black employees and combat anti-black racism.

Huawei is offering more than 140 online tech courses to Singaporeans, free of charge. The courses cover topics like artificial intelligence (AI), 5G, and cloud computing. All courses are available in English and Mandarin. Participants will have to commit between 10 and 50 hours to complete a course.

In an initiative to address the AI talent crunch in Singapore, Huawei announced the launch of the Virtual AI Academy at the Huawei Ecosystem Summit. This announcement comes after the company opened a US$10 million AI lab at Changi Business Park last November, which was said to be the country’s first AI lab to boast 5G capabilities. The virtual AI lab is available on the Huawei website.

Instagram is now expanding access to Instagram Shopping to more businesses, including creators who want to sell their own merchandise. The company introduced new “Commerce Eligibility Requirements” that offers guidelines that interested businesses must adhere to, in order to qualify for Instagram selling.

Amongst the guidelines, the Instagram account must represent the store or website where the products are being sold from and also have an authentic, established presence and a sufficient follower base. These requirements will go into effect on July 9 in all the markets where Instagram Shopping is supported.

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