Connect with us

Bioengineer

Security most important to retaining mobile banking customers, NTU-WeBank study finds

Service quality and system quality rank second and thirdCredit: NTU Singapore A study by a research team from Nanyang Technological

Published

on

A study by a research team from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) and China’s first digital-only bank WeBank has found that security, service quality and system quality are the most important factors for customers who use mobile banking.

Two in five respondents (40%) said that the security they felt while carrying out transactions on mobile applications was their most important consideration.

This was followed by the level of service quality (25%), which referred to whether the banking applications could fulfil users’ needs, such as carrying out transactions and easy access to credit card services.

System quality, which considers the performance of the application, including compatibility with different mobile phones and loading speeds, came in a close third (24%).

The results of the study were published in the Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, an academic publication by Elsevier, last December.

The researchers said their study which ranked factors that are important in determining customer loyalty would be useful to financial institutions who are looking at improving their mobile banking applications.

Already widely used in China prior to COVID-19, mobile banking applications have seen a sharp rise in uptake throughout Asia during the pandemic, as the touchless payment systems provided by most mobile banking applications have gained traction.

The NTU-WeBank team obtained their results after surveying 224 mobile banking users of a large bank in China in 2019. Over three-quarters of the respondents (79%) were frequent users of mobile banking, meaning that they used it at least once a week.

The researchers said that although the study was conducted in China, the results are applicable to other countries where mobile banking has a high level of adoption, such as Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Associate Professor Xu Hong, from NTU’s School of Social Sciences who led the study, said: “It was already known that all these factors: security, service quality, system quality, and interface design had an impact on customers, and this study highlights implications for banks’ strategies for retaining their mobile banking users, as well as exploring how to capture new customers.”

Assistant Professor Yu Han, from NTU’s School of Computer Science and Engineering, who co-led the research, said: “Our study has implications for banks’ strategies for retaining their mobile banking users, as well as exploring how to capture new customers.”

Assoc Prof Xu and Asst Prof Yu are part of the team at the Joint NTU-WeBank Research Centre on Fintech which initiated this study. The joint centre was launched in early 2019 with the aim of developing new technologies to support Banking 4.0, where banking can be personalised and done anytime, anywhere.

Mr Joe Chen, Executive Vice President of WeBank, said: “The findings are relevant to other banks who are increasingly rolling out more digital solutions, which include payment, lending, and wealth management applications. As mobile banking worldwide is becoming increasingly accepted as replacement for branch-based banking in many countries, it is important for banks to know the factors that affect and influence customer loyalty. In this regard, the Joint NTU-WeBank Research Centre will continue to generate research outcomes and innovations for the benefit of the Fintech industry.”

NTU Senior Vice President (Research) Professor Lam Khin Yong, added: “The NTU-WeBank partnership is another example of the University’s strong links with the private sector. It also shows our strong support for industry collaborations that accelerates the translation of research into innovation and commercial adoption. This study also serves as a good example of interdisciplinary research involving faculty from the social sciences and computer science, as it solves a very important issue in today’s fintech industry.”

A multi-pronged approach to build customer loyalty

The team’s analysis of the results also showed that a mobile application’s interface design had a strong and positive impact on respondents’ evaluation of system and service quality.

This is despite it scoring relatively low compared to other factors surveyed in the study. For example, the team found that respondents tended to associate good interface design, such as smooth transitions between pages, with optimal system quality and high security.

The findings also outlined a larger correlation between several factors that were surveyed. For example, service and system quality and interface design were found to be important in sparking user loyalty, which the researchers defined as “the intention to continuously use the mobile banking product and recommend it to others.”

After analysing the survey results, the team advised that mobile banking operators should focus on providing multi-level security features to increase the users’ sense of security when using the applications.

Such features might include pop-up messages that alert users to the potential risks that could occur when using mobile banking services, as well as a well-documented policy statement from the financial institution.

Besides providing users assurance of their security while using the applications, Assoc Prof Xu added: “The level of service quality, which encompasses factors such as the levels of reliability, responsiveness, and empathy from bank staff, could enhance users’ satisfaction and increase their usage of mobile banking services.”

“By providing a stable and secure mobile banking system that boasts fast responses and efficient service, banks can encourage customers to continue using their mobile banking application, while ultimately strengthening user loyalty. The results can also help improve their overall mobile banking strategy and cater the functions of their apps to the needs of different age groups.”

Next steps: overseas studies

To further their research on loyalty intention in mobile banking, the NTU-WeBank team is looking to conduct studies in other countries and regions to identify other determinants that could affect customer loyalty.

Assoc Prof Xu said the team will continue to leverage the computing platform which it has developed to collect and analyse user experience data for future studies.

“We believe the large-scale immersive studies we will conduct using our computing platform powered by social computing and social media technologies will be able to help banks gain more insights into customers’ intentions,” said Assoc Prof Xu.

###

http://news.ntu.edu.sg/pages/newsdetail.aspx?URL=http://news.ntu.edu.sg/news/Pages/NR2021_Mar15.aspx&Guid=5210e29e-b797-4bda-8866-df252ffc77cd&Category=News+Releases

The results of the study were published in the Journal of Retailing and Consumer Services, an academic publication by Elsevier, last December.

Source: https://bioengineer.org/security-most-important-to-retaining-mobile-banking-customers-ntu-webank-study-finds/

security-most-important-to-retaining-mobile-banking-customers,-ntu-webank-study-finds

Bioengineer

$1 million grant to address cold storage logistics in vaccine delivery

Credit: Penn State College of Engineering COVID-19 vaccines have been tested, validated and administered to millions of people around the

Published

on

COVID-19 vaccines have been tested, validated and administered to millions of people around the world. But in some countries, the vaccines have yet to arrive in great enough numbers.

One significant hurdle is that the vaccines must be stored between 36 and 46 degrees Fahrenheit to retain their full efficacy, according to the Centers for Disease Control. To ensure the proper temperature, the vaccines need a refrigerated supply chain, also known as a cold chain, as they are distributed across the globe.

“If they are in warm temperatures, COVID vaccines and other medications are susceptible to degradation, which means they lose potency,” said Medina, who heads the Medina Group Precision Therapeutics and Bioresponsive Materials Lab at Penn State. “And the cold storage supply chain is expensive to maintain, with several transport steps necessary from the manufacturer to the distributer to the provider facility.”

To address that challenge, Medina and his team plan to develop fluorochemical dispersants, known as “FTags,” which coat the proteins within the vaccine liquids to stabilize them thermally.

“The FTags dissolve the proteins in a fluorine-based liquid, which yields proteins that we believe may be stable at elevated temperatures, without compromising their structure or function,” Medina said. “When dissolved in the fluorine-based liquid, the proteins also are immune to contamination by microorganisms and enzymes.”

Fluorochemicals are used in a range of applications, such as in making surfaces resistant to scratches and chemical degradation, as in the case of non-stick cookware.

Eventually, Medina plans to study the use of fluorochemical coatings in other biological products, with the goal of eliminating the need to move any pharmaceutical via a cold chain.

“This will allow access to medications in places where currently there is not,” Medina said. “For example, a soldier at war could be exposed to a harmful chemical agent. A fluorochemical-coated protein, which can be carried without refrigeration, could neutralize that agent immediately. This is part of DARPA’s interest in supplying this grant.”

The grant is part of DARPA’s Young Faculty Award program, which provides funding, mentoring and networking opportunities to faculty early in their careers who plan to focus their research on Department of Defense and national security interests.

In 2020, Medina published a study in ACS Nano on delivering therapeutic medications directly to a precise area of the body through an acoustically sensitive carrier, guided by ultrasound. The proposed DARPA-funded study is a spin-off of that study’s findings.

“Janna Sloand, my former grad student who recently defended her doctoral research, came up with the coating technology in our last study,” Medina said. “It dovetails nicely with our new study, which will use those same coatings to take on the limitations of the cold chain.”

###

Source: https://bioengineer.org/1-million-grant-to-address-cold-storage-logistics-in-vaccine-delivery/

$1-million-grant-to-address-cold-storage-logistics-in-vaccine-delivery

Continue Reading

Bioengineer

Reduced microbial stability linked to soil carbon loss in active layer under alpine permafrost degra

Credit: NIEER Chinese researchers have recently discovered links between reduction in microbial stability and soil carbon loss in the active

Published

on

Chinese researchers have recently discovered links between reduction in microbial stability and soil carbon loss in the active layer of degraded alpine permafrost on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (QTP).

The researchers, headed by Prof. CHEN Shengyun from the Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and Resources (NIEER) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), and XUE Kai from University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, conducted a combined in-depth analysis of soil microbial communities and their co-occurrence networks in the active permafrost layer along an extensive gradient of permafrost degradation.

The QTP encompasses the largest extent of high-altitude mountain permafrost in the world. This permafrost is different than high-latitude permafrost and stores massive soil carbon. An often ignored characteristic of permafrost is that the carbon pool in the active layer soil is more active and directly affected by climate change, compared to deeper layers.

Triggered by climate warming, permafrost degradation may decrease soil carbon stability and induce massive carbon loss, thus leading to positive carbon-climate feedback. However, microbial-mediated mechanisms for carbon loss from the active layer soil in degraded permafrost still remain unclear.

In this study, the researchers found that alpine permafrost degradation reduced the stability of active layer microbial communities as evidenced by increased sensitivity of microbial composition to environmental change, promoted destabilizing network properties and reduced resistance to node or edge attacking of the microbial network.

They discovered that soil organic carbon loss in severely degraded permafrost is associated with increased microbial dissimilarity, thereby potentially contributing to a positive carbon feedback in alpine permafrost on the QTP.

###

The results were published in PNAS in an article entitled “Reduced microbial stability in the active layer is associated with carbon loss under alpine permafrost degradation”.

This research was financially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Strategic Priority Research Program (A) of CAS and the Second Tibetan Plateau Scientific Expedition and Research Program.

Triggered by climate warming, permafrost degradation may decrease soil carbon stability and induce massive carbon loss, thus leading to positive carbon-climate feedback. However, microbial-mediated mechanisms for carbon loss from the active layer soil in degraded permafrost still remain unclear.

Source: https://bioengineer.org/reduced-microbial-stability-linked-to-soil-carbon-loss-in-active-layer-under-alpine-permafrost-degra/

reduced-microbial-stability-linked-to-soil-carbon-loss-in-active-layer-under-alpine-permafrost-degra

Continue Reading

Bioengineer

SNMMI Image of the Year: PET imaging measures cognitive impairment in COVID-19 patients

Credit: G Blazhenets et al., Department of Nuclear Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of

Published

on

Credit: G Blazhenets et al., Department of Nuclear Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg.

Reston, VA–The effects of COVID-19 on the brain can be accurately measured with positron emission tomography (PET), according to research presented at the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) 2021 Annual Meeting. In the study, newly diagnosed COVID-19 patients, who required inpatient treatment and underwent PET brain scans, were found to have deficits in neuronal function and accompanying cognitive impairment, and in some, this impairment continued six months after their diagnosis. The detailed depiction of areas of cognitive impairment, neurological symptoms and comparison of impairment over a six-month time frame has been selected as SNMMI’s 2021 Image of the Year.

Each year, SNMMI chooses an image that best exemplifies the most promising advances in the field of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. The state-of-the-art technologies captured in these images demonstrate the capacity to improve patient care by detecting disease, aiding diagnosis, improving clinical confidence, and providing a means of selecting appropriate treatments. This year, the SNMMI Henry N. Wagner, Jr., Image of the Year was chosen from more than 1,280 abstracts submitted to the meeting and voted on by reviewers and the society leadership.

“As the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic proceeds, it has become increasingly clear that neurocognitive long-term consequences occur not only in severe COVID-19 cases, but in mild and moderate cases as well. Neurocognitive deficits like impaired memory, disturbed concentration and cognitive problems may persist well beyond the acute phase of the disease,” said Ganna Blazhenets, PhD, a post-doctoral researcher in Medical Imaging at the University Medical Center Freiburg, in Freiburg, Germany.

To study cognitive impairment associated with COVID-19, researchers carried out a prospective study on recently diagnosed COVID-19 patients who required inpatient treatment for non-neurological complaints. A cognitive assessment was performed, followed by imaging with 18F-FDG PET if at least two new neurological symptoms were present. By comparing COVID-19 patients to controls, the Freiburg group established a COVID-19-related covariance pattern of brain metabolism with most prominent decreases in cortical regions. Across patients, the expression of this pattern showed a very high correlation with the patients’ cognitive performance.

Follow-up PET imaging was performed six months after the initial COVID-19 diagnosis. Imaging results showed a significant improvement in the neurocognitive deficits in most patients, accompanied by an almost complete normalization of the brain metabolism.

“We can clearly state that a significant recovery of regional neuronal function and cognition occurs for most COVID-19 patients based on the results of this study. However, it is important to recognize the evidence of longer-lasting deficits in neuronal function and accompanying cognitive deficits is still measurable in some patients six months after manifestation of disease,” noted Blazhenets. “As a result, post-COVID-19 patients with persistent cognitive complaints should be presented to a neurologist and possibly allocated to cognitive rehabilitation programs.”

“18F-FDG PET is an established biomarker of neuronal function and neuronal injury,” stated SNMMI’s Scientific Program Committee chair, Umar Mahmood, MD, PhD. “As shown the Image of the Year, it can be applied to unravel neuronal correlates of the cognitive decline in patients after COVID-19. Since 18F-FDG PET is widely available, it may therefore aid in the diagnostic work-up and follow-up in patients with persistent cognitive impairment after COVID-19.”

###

Abstract 41. “Altered regional cerebral function and its association with cognitive impairment in COVID 19: A prospective FDG PET study.” Ganna Blazhenets, Johannes Thurow, Lars Frings and Philipp Meyer, Department of Nuclear Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany; Nils Schroeter, Tobias Bormann, Cornelius Weiller, Andrea Dressing and Jonas Hosp; Department of Neurology and Clinical Neuroscience, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany; and Dirk Wagner, Department of Internal Medicine, Medical Center – University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany.

All 2021 SNMMI Annual Meeting abstracts can be found online at https://jnm.snmjournals.org/content/62/supplement_1.

About the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging

The Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging (SNMMI) is an international scientific and medical organization dedicated to advancing nuclear medicine and molecular imaging, vital elements of precision medicine that allow diagnosis and treatment to be tailored to individual patients in order to achieve the best possible outcomes.

SNMMI’s members set the standard for molecular imaging and nuclear medicine practice by creating guidelines, sharing information through journals and meetings and leading advocacy on key issues that affect molecular imaging and therapy research and practice. For more information, visit http://www.snmmi.org.

“As the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic proceeds, it has become increasingly clear that neurocognitive long-term consequences occur not only in severe COVID-19 cases, but in mild and moderate cases as well. Neurocognitive deficits like impaired memory, disturbed concentration and cognitive problems may persist well beyond the acute phase of the disease,” said Ganna Blazhenets, PhD, a post-doctoral researcher in Medical Imaging at the University Medical Center Freiburg, in Freiburg, Germany.

Source: https://bioengineer.org/snmmi-image-of-the-year-pet-imaging-measures-cognitive-impairment-in-covid-19-patients/

snmmi-image-of-the-year:-pet-imaging-measures-cognitive-impairment-in-covid-19-patients

Continue Reading

Title

Crunchbase12 hours ago

Square Rolls Up Afterpay As BNPL Market Stays Hot

Payments platform Square plans to buy Afterpay, an Australian buy now, pay later service, in an all-stock deal valued at...

Bioengineer18 hours ago

$1 million grant to address cold storage logistics in vaccine delivery

Credit: Penn State College of Engineering COVID-19 vaccines have been tested, validated and administered to millions of people around the

Cointelegraph4 days ago

The future of DeFi is spread across multiple blockchains

Creating interoperability, not competition: Multichain solutions will positively impact the blockchain space in terms of accessibility, innovation and economic viability.

Ventureburn4 days ago

ZwartTech launches Talent Foundation to equip Africans with digital skills

Lagos-based ZwartTech has announced the launch of its new edtech, Zwart Talent Foundation (ZTF) in a statement on 30 July...

CNBC6 days ago

Earnings

Corporate Company Earnings, Find Earnings Per Share and Earnings History Online

Bioengineer7 days ago

Reduced microbial stability linked to soil carbon loss in active layer under alpine permafrost degra

Credit: NIEER Chinese researchers have recently discovered links between reduction in microbial stability and soil carbon loss in the active

Reuters1 week ago

Chipmaker TSMC says too early to say on Germany expansion

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd (TSMC) (2330.TW) said on Monday that it was too early to say whether it will...

Bioengineer1 week ago

SNMMI Image of the Year: PET imaging measures cognitive impairment in COVID-19 patients

Credit: G Blazhenets et al., Department of Nuclear Medicine, Medical Center - University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, University of

Techcrunch1 week ago

The DL on CockroachDB – TechCrunch

As college students at Berkeley, Spencer Kimball and Peter Mattis created a successful open-source graphics program, GIMP, which got the...

CNBC1 week ago

International: Top News And Analysis

CNBC International is the world leader for news on business, technology, China, trade, oil prices, the Middle East and markets.

Review

    Select language

    Trending