Gearing up for Finovate 2014

I was laid up in bed with flu for a couple of days this week, so when my editor said a package had been delivered to my desk (couriered no less), I had a whole suspenseful day to wonder what on earth it could be, writes Ellie Chambers

I was laid up in bed with flu for a couple of days this week, so when my editor said a package had been delivered to my desk (couriered no less), I had a whole suspenseful day to wonder what on earth it could be, writes Ellie Chambers

To my memory, I hadn’t ordered anything from any of my online haunts, which only goes to show how awful I was feeling.

So when I finally dragged myself from my deathbed and arrived at work on Thursday morning, I tore into the package eagerly, especially since I took the "FRAGILE" on the outside to mean "EXPENSIVE."

Careful excavation of the jiffy bag revealed a box with a picture of a tablet on the outside – hopes raised I fumbled with the cardboard flaps and flicked the box open to reveal…

…a tablet made of Lego.

When I overcame the initial disappointment (which came with a side of rage), I realised that my present was from one of the Finovate presenters.

On the side of the box was emblazoned the slogan: Banking technology is now child’s play.

The concept was a clever one and, once I had set my dashed hopes aside, it got us talking in the office.

It also got me thinking about the companies that are due to present at Finovate next week.

During the last couple of weeks I have received what I can only describe as a barrage of emails from companies presenting at Finovate, but only a few stood out for me.

Kofax was one of them. This company will be presenting their mobile capture solution at the conference.

While remote deposit capture in the form of cheques is rather old hat to many in the payments world, Kofax offers banking customers the opportunity to converge paper and digital platforms by taking pictures of everything from bills to ID documents to loan applications.

I don’t know about you, but as someone who is driven to distraction by the amount of paper that goes from my bank to me and vice versa, these solutions could prove invaluable.

Xpenditure is another company that reconciles paper and electronic formats, allowing users to scan their receipts with a mobile device and instantly create expenditure reports.

Every now and then I start budgeting, using a mixture of spreadsheets and mobile apps.

I usually give up because my vast expenditure on my love of clothes and food depresses me, but I might persist if I could record and analyse my spending this easily.

I daresay it might actually improve my spending habits, and stop me haemorrhaging money on Asos quite so much.

There were a few more companies that stood out, but as an unashamed example of the average consumer, these were the two that most appealed to me.

As for the company that sent me my Lego tablet – you know who you are – give me a real one and I’ll give you a lovely write up.

And as for the tablet itself – do you think I could get away with putting it on eBay with a blurry photo and the phrase "made of Lego" buried in the small print?

lego

lego tablet