Monday, September 22, 2008

Browser, Clients, Credit and 2.0

Enterprise2.0 & Office2.0, Clients and Browsers

Phil Wainewright has a truly excellent piece on the use of mashup's on RightNow Technologies. Some of the points I am fascinated with is Phil's contention that in many situations "browser only/ no download" culture of Office2.0 may not actually deliver benefit, and that there remains a role for the lightweight client.

Credit and Collections in The News

The Wall Street Journal reports that credit and collections is now a front and center concern for all US banks. They are focusing on getting in front of customers as soon as their is any indication that they may be struggling; making more offers around helping construct partial payment and late payment plans; and they are using these interactions and incentives to help "renegotiated the debt relationship" they have with the client (i.e. reduce limits, introduce new terms etc.) Interestingly, they are also investing in self service solutions where customers that find themselves in a "bit of trouble", can develop and deploy their own late payment plan entirely on their own and without having to speak to the agent or collections agency.

Oh, and $969bn is the amount on rotating credit, ie outanding on credit cards. Gee, its sounds a lot when you say it like that.

Getting All 2.0 On Your Credit

Another service called BillShrink is also trying to help customers manage their credit card debt (VentureBeat). What I love about this is that the service makes obvious what other benefits might be (i.e. air miles, fees, etc.). It asks you a few simple questions around what your spending is like, and how much your credit limit is, and then gets to making some suggestions.

I sincerely believe that there are opportunities to more accurately asses the true nature of a persons payment risk through higher levels of data granularity; using data from different data pools, and ideas lifted from the world of social media.


To return to the question of "how you spend your money will impact your credit score": from what I remember if you buy groceries with your credit card, this is not good. The credit card company might make some high level assumptions about what this means. But wait.

Techcrunch reports on Expensify, a solution that is a credit card, that allows you to take a picture of your receipt, and file the whole thing. You can then print out your receipts by trip, in order, and attached with proof of payment (this is where I go, OMG, like a 13 year old). They take a 3% fee for doing this (woah.... what? but wait a minute, how much time would you spend doing your expenses, how late are you usually in handing them in, and what is your usual charge on that? yes, it does, it does add up). Of course the real beauty with Expensify is that they could be your "credit information broker", and unlike Billshrink they won't be asking you to guess, you just gave them permission to track your spend.

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