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The Netherlands Insurance Landscape in a Nutshell

‘What more could people want’ in a nation that already ranks highest in terms of press and economic freedom, human development, quality of life, and happiness? On another note, insurance companies and the government must have been doing something right — over 99.8% of the Dutch population is insured! 

This might portray the Netherlands as a saturated market for insurance. However, while the overall Dutch populace has health insurance, there’s still scope for life, non-life and better health insurance products. 

The following infographic on Netherlands’ Insurance landscape can shed some perspective.

Insurance Challenges in the Netherlands

KPMG reports, 65% of CIOs (Chief Insurance Officers) agree that the shortage of skills is preventing them from matching the pace of change. [The skills shortage here corresponds to big data, analytics, AI, enterprise and technical architecture and DevOps]

Privacy-Technology paradox is one of the main reasons for the gap between insurance products and personalization. Strict European privacy regulations create a barrier for advanced technologies that relies on data.

Insurance is on the Tech-Radar

The Dutch insurance companies are not only thriving to match the pace of change but also inclined towards investing in futuristic technology. Many of these technologies can be collectively called Artificial Intelligence. But, the impact of individual technologies and how the insurance sector is deploying them is what matters.

Current Technology Trends in Insurance in the Netherlands

Microservices

Microservices breaks down large insurance schemes to their simplest core functions. Organizations treat every microservice as a single service with its API (Application Program Interface).

Insurers in the Netherlands concur that getting into microservices architecture early can bring a bigger competitive advantage to them. Microservices in travel and vehicle insurance promises to be a great prospect in the Netherlands.

Blockchain

Blockchain corresponds to smart contracts in a distributed environment. 

You might also like to read about how distributed ledgers can revamp insurance workflows.

The insurance industry is already using distributed ledgers for insuring flight delays, lost baggage claims, and is expanding to shipping, health insurance, and consumer durables domains.

Edge Computing

Edge computing brings computation and data storage closer to the consumer’s location. It improves response time and at times can take real-time actions. Autonomous vehicles, home automation, smart cities, etc. are the sectors that deploy edge computing effectively.

Insured assets with edge computing capabilities help insurers offer better deals and customized policies.

Cognitive Expert Advisors

Augmenting customer service units with AI-powered bots and AI-assisted human advisors add to the superior customer experience. The cognitive expert advisor is a combination of both.

Cognitive experts use advanced analytics, natural language processing, decision-making algorithms, and machine learning. This technology breaks the prevailing trade-offs between speed, cost, and quality in delivering insurance policies and products.

Fraud Analytics

It involves social network analytics, big data analytics, and social customer relationship management for rating claims, improving transparency, and identifying frauds.

AXA insurance has been using fraud analytics in its product OYAK to integrate all customer-related data into a coordinated corporate vision. The technology has enabled AXA to link two slightly records from the same customer preventing fraudulent instances.

AI-based Underwriting

AI-driven unmanned aerial vehicles, also known as drones can examine sites, which are otherwise extreme for humans to visit. 

Using such technologies for geological surveys makes the underwriting process more accurate. Insurers are aligning their risk management strategies with AI-based underwriting.

webinar: AI for data-driven Insurers

Join our Webinar — AI for Data-driven Insurers: Challenges, Opportunities & the Way Forward hosted by our CEO, Parag Sharma as he addresses Insurance business leaders and decision-makers on April 14, 2020.

Machine Learning (ML)

ML relies on data patterns and is capable of performing tasks without external instructions. In this system, the computer listens to the customer’s data, learns from it, and begins to automatically handle similar instances. 

InsurTech is leveraging machine learning to quote optimal prices and manage claims effectively. It is a cost-effective technology that works on different sets of user-persona.

Predictive Analytics

Predictive analytics studies current and historical facts to make predictions about future or otherwise unknown events.

Leading insurers in the Netherlands are using predictive analytics for controlling risks in underwriting, claims, marketing, and developing personalized products.

Predictive Analytics in Insurance Use Case: Zurich

Switzerland’s largest insurer- Zurich uses predictive analytics to identify risks that their customers are ‘actually’ going to face. Predictive analytics incorporates machine learning to anticipate events beyond statistics and probability.

The open-source machine learning model brings the organization the following benefits.

  1. Zurich is capable of scaling analytics across the larger volumes of data generated through smart devices. 
  2. There’s a flexibility to introduce new data sources and features and test against them in real-time.
  3. Data scientists can mix-and-match tools to experiment and curate different data sets.

Predictive analytics is Zurich’s key differentiator enabling it to move with the speed of the fastest product in the market.

For AI-based solutions, customer experience and deep-tech consulting, drop us a ‘hi’ at hello@mantralabsglobal.com.

Future Technology Trends That Have Potential to Disrupt Insurance Industry

“You’ll need other skills now. I tell my colleagues: go out, attend seminars, what closely when doing groceries. Because you can learn from a customer-centric view at any moment.”

Wim Hekstra, CEO, Aegon Wholesale

Brain-Computer Interface (BCI)

BCI allows computers to interpret the user’s distinct brain patterns. At present researchers are focusing on using BCI for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders. This can change medical-underwriting schemes. 

Human Augmentation

It refers to creating cognitive and physical improvements integral to the human body. The present-day insurance policies cover human and assets. The future calls for insurance for superhumans.

Smart Dust

It is a system of many tiny micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS). Smart dust includes a microscopic cluster of sensors, robots, cameras, etc. to identify changes in light, temperature, etc. This can help the insurance industry by triggering information against events, which are susceptible to changes. 

The future brings enormous opportunities for insurers with Augmentation, AI, and Machine Learning. The insurers’ intent towards accuracy, cost-optimization, and personalized products is the driving force to experiment with technology.

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8 Best Ways to Reduce Android App Size

5 minutes, 29 seconds read

With the increase in mobile storage spaces that have gone up to 256 GB, app size is also growing. App size is sure to grow as developers are adding new features, trying to meet customer needs, and also trying to support their apps on various screen sizes. Around 74% of the world uses Android, and 70% of users consider app size before installing them. Moreover, as humans are getting accustomed to instant gratification, they ponder on ways to download apps as they take up storage spaces. Despite the cloud support for photos, videos, and files, android users face issues, such as mobile hanging due to app size. As customer expectations are increasing, android app developers are considering other ways to reduce app size while still incorporating significant additional features and keeping in mind the customer experience.

Below are the 8 best ways to reduce android app size:

1. Use Android App Bundle to Reduce App Size

When generating the release version of your app, you can choose between APK and Android App Bundle.  The second option will make Google play to generate the APK with only those features a specific user need. 

Use Android App Bundle

App Bundle Vs APK

Android App Bundle

  • It is a publishing format that includes compiled code and resources of your app, and delays APK generation and signing to Google Play.
  • With Android App Bundles, the compressed download size restriction is 150 MB. The app bundle cannot be used with APK expansion files.
Android App Bundle
Important: In the second half of 2021, new apps will be required to publish with the Android App Bundle on Google Play. New apps larger than 150 MB must use either Play Feature Delivery or Play Asset Delivery.

How to build android app bundles?

To build app bundles, follow these steps:

  1. Download Android Studio 3.2 or higher—it’s the easiest way to add feature modules and build app bundles.
  2. Add support for Play Feature Delivery by including a base module, organizing code and resources for configuration APKs, and, optionally, adding feature modules.
  3. Build an Android App Bundle using Android Studio. You can also deploy your app to a connected device from an app bundle by modifying your run/debug configuration and selecting the option to deploy APK from app bundle. Keep in mind, using this option results in longer build times when compared to building and deploying only an APK.
  4. If you’re not using the IDE, you can instead build an app bundle from the command line.
  5. Test your Android App Bundle by using it to generate APKs that you deploy to a device.
  6. Enroll into app Play App Signing. Otherwise, you can’t upload your app bundle to the Play Console.
  7. Publish your app bundle to Google Play.

Please note: Android Package Kit – As per developer console, by the mid of 2021, developers won’t be able to upload apk on play store)

  • Android operating system uses APK which is the package file format for distribution and installation of mobile apps, games and middleware. APK is similar to other software packages such as APPX in Microsoft Windows or a Debian package in Debian -based operating systems.
  • Google Play requires that the compressed APK downloaded by the users should not exceed 100 MB.
  • The expansion files for your app are hosted by Google Play which serves them to the device at no cost to you. The expansion files are saved to the device’s shared storage location (the SD card or USB-mountable partition).

2. Use Proguard

Proguard is probably one of the most useful tools to reduce your APK size. It reduces the source code files to a minimum and can reduce the APK file size upto 90%.

  • Use it in all variants whenever using “Proguard”
  • Helps to avoid conflict at the of generate apk or bundle if will use in all the variants.
  • We cannot let ProGuard rename or remove any fields on these data classes, as they have to match the serialized format. It’s a safe bet to add a @Keep annotation on the whole class or a wildcard rule on all your models.

3. Use Android Size Analyzer Plugin

This Android Studio plugin will provide you recommendations to reduce the size of your application.

With the APK Analyzer, you can accomplish the following:

  • View the absolute and relative size of files in the APK, such as the DEX and Android resource files.
  • Understand the composition of DEX files.
  • Quickly view the final versions of files in the APK, such as the AndroidManifest.xml file.
  • Perform a side-by-side comparison of two APKs.

There are three ways to access the APK Analyzer when a project is open:

  • Drag an APK into the Editor window of Android Studio.
  • Switch to the Project perspective in the Project window and then double-click the APK in the default build/output/apks/ directory.
  • Select Build > Analyze APK in the menu bar and then select your APK.

More details at: Jetbrains

4. Optimize Your App’s Resources

Whether used or not, every resource takes up memory. It is therefore necessary to have only those resources that you need, and to use those in a memory efficient way. In other words, you should consider the resolution of the image before finalizing on it.

5. Optimize Libraries

As large libraries consume huge amounts of space, it is advisable to remove parts of it in case you do not need them and if it is permitted by the license of the library. Proguard can aid you in this process but it is not always able to remove large internal dependencies.

6. Use Vector Graphics Wherever Possible

They are sharp and do not consume much space as they rely on mathematical calculations and not on pixels that need to be saved. However, they cannot be used for photography.

7. Compress Your Images

By using tools such as pngcrush, you can reduce the file size of PNG images. It is advisable to do this images as they still look the same. 

8. Only Support Specific Densities

If only a small portion of users use a specific density, it might be better to let Android scale your other densities for them as it would reduce your APK size.


As mobile storage space is growing, people are installing a large number of apps to meet a wide range of needs. But as app size is increasing, people are continuing to struggle with storage issues. With provisions such as Proguard, one can compress the APK file size and optimize libraries easily. Compressing images and using vector graphs are also useful in reducing app size.

About the author: Anand Singh is Tech Lead at Mantra Labs. He is integral to the company’s Android-based projects and enterprise application development.

Further Reading:

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