CORONA VIRUS AND THE ONLINE ECONOMY
The economic crisis arising from the coronavirus pandemic took us deeper into a digital world. Behavioral shifts are undoubtedly experiencing a long-lasting effect as the economy starts to gradually recover.
However, not everyone is prepared to adopt a “new normal” which has accelerated the transition to a digital economy. The digital economy has also helped to exposed the degree of reliability behind various systems bringing together the linked and hitherto disconnected.
On the sunny side, the pandemic has helped increased need for online services, healthcare, shopping, education, conferencing, etc. The report says that telework and online conferences have taken a step toward increasing the market for online conferencing apps, such as Microsoft Teams, Skype, Cisco's Webex, and Zoom. Across the world, businesses were able to support their teams to embrace collaborative platforms that support person to person, video conferencing and screen sharing activities.
The crisis, also forced schools in several countries to shut down as Ministries of education and school authorities replaced the classrooms with distance learning practices as students students in lockdown using their home computers and the Internet to learn from their homes.
Efficient distance education involves oversight by parents, especially in the case of children or young adults operating from their homes. there is need to avoid distractions, which in many poorer households are simply not available.
The Cryptocurency market has also experienced a boom as exchange in Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other cryptocurrencies which rose dramatically in early 2020, had a further peak in February going into the season of coronavirus.
In the financial services industry throughout 2020, the blockchain expanded before other sectors. Real-world artifacts are related to their abstract counterparts in applications such as food monitoring, product authentication, and the storage of sensitive data. With every new technology, some people are naive and inexperienced in scamming, hacking, and stealing hard-earned money. With digital currencies, this has definitely proven to be the case, so the security dangers must be identified. For those with cryptocurrencies, just be as vigilant as you would with any investment to purchase, sell, or gamble online.
We have seen how emerging technology has been helping to counter COVID-19 in the past few months. Several recent articles addressed how digital platforms will help mitigate the economic impact and later accelerate the growth of COVID-19.
Africa has an opportunity to lead digital growth as COVID-19 bares its fangs on the continent.