Minimize physical contact and maximize contactless interactions

Minimize physical contact and maximize contactless intraction is the main objective of organizations.
This priority concerns many sectors and we are experiencing a deep change never seen before with linked implications at all levels.
The rising attention on risks about privacy and cybersecurity for instance are consequences of a massive transition from actions based on physical contact and presence to touchless and digitized actions, such as voice recognition and face recognition through computer vision.

This forced transition has brought a huge evangelization about advantages due to the adoption of touchless technologies, we can count a large party of enthusiastic adopters and an equal large party of individuals worried about data protection and privacy.
Technologies based on computer vision and AI collect images, interactions and voices from real world,  and transform them into data, therefore the data processing is always under the critical question: will the data be processed according to honesty principles, lawfulness and transparency for the protection of privacy?
In Italy for instance despite of a good willingness to adopt touchless practices and technologies in the future,  it keep on lasting a strong opposition toward facial recognition, unless strictly necessary for identification process.

A recent research by Capgemini attests that 55% of consumer consumers would avoid a store if it was using facial recognition to identify them and  66% of consumer prefer to use mobile apps at physical locations such as stores and bank branches instead of touch-based alternatives.
To keep users satisfied with technologies over time and to undermine understandable distrust of computer vision-based recognition technologies, it is important that companies are committed to maintaining high quality and relevant experiences, in few words companies should work to offer a tangible value to the customer.

The pandemic has been the main catalyst for all the technological changes we are seeing in retail and many behavioural changes induced by an unprecedented mindset that gives absolute priority to safety and health.
The pandemic is undoubtedly the main accelerator in the adoption of touchless technologies:
77% of consumers expect to be able to use touchless technologies on a daily basis to avoid interactions that generally require physical contact*.

Another interesting fact is that the behavior based on non-touch practices will remain even after the pandemic emergency because the advantages of these solutions have been grasped (vocal interfaces, facial recognition, mobile-based applications).

Implementing and adopting large-scale technologies that meet this public demand requires a long-term vision and strategic plan with two imperatives:
- adopt a test and learn approach
- adopt a data-driven approach
The real change that is expected is therefore in the organizations.
Monitoring the experience and learning and collecting data is as crucial as observation of people’s behavior, the way in which people welcome new interaction solutions can be measured and analyzed and, on the basis of this constant practice, it is possible to gather insights to guide future choices and improvements to be implemented in the adoption strategy of these technologies.

*Capgemini Research Institute, Consumer Survey, April 2020, N=4,818 consumers



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