As technology advances over the years, many applications and platforms have been invented and created to ease the cost of living, especially in Singapore, in terms of item purchase, overseas accommodation, transport etc. as they provide a cheaper option for people. However, apart from the fact that these platforms are more economically-friendly, one of the major problems that these platforms pose is safety.
Carousell, a Singaporean e-commerce company, provides consumer to consumer sales services via a mobile application. It is headquartered in Singapore. It operates in countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, and the United States of America. As a frequent user of carousell to buy posters, merchandise and even selling my used items, fear is inevitable as it mostly involves meeting up with strangers for collection and payment or paying via bank transfers in some situations. Although no cases of scam has been reported thus far, I do feel that it is still not safe especially for teenagers who are mostly alone to meet up with strangers or make payment through bank transfers. Thus, I feel that this platform of purchase has risks involved and people should take more caution when participating in such transactions.
‘Founded in August of 2008 and based in San Francisco, California, Airbnb is a trusted community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique accommodation around the world — online or from a mobile phone or tablet. Whether an apartment for a night, a castle for a week, or a villa for a month, Airbnb connects people to unique travel experiences, at any price point, in more than 34,000 cities and 190 countries. And with world-class customer service and a growing community of users, Airbnb is the easiest way for people to monetise their extra space and showcase it to an audience of millions. Although I have not used this platform as of now, I am actually anticipating how it will turn out like especially living overseas in another stranger’s house. I do feel that this platform is really meaningful as it allows a better insight into the country’s culture, way of life and experience it personally. I deem it as a really refreshing experience for many travellers who are used to putting up at luxury hotels or resorts, as it also helps to train individual adaptability to foreign environments at the same time. Although it also involves a huge risk of conflicts with the owner, or facing insecurities and anxiety of staying in a stranger’s house not knowing what to expect, it really enhances travel experience.
Uber Technologies Inc. is an American international transportation network company headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company develops, markets and operates the Uber mobile app, which allows consumers with smartphones to submit a trip request which is then routed to Uber drivers who use their own cars. As a frequent user of UBER, I really enjoy this experience as compared to the typical taxis, one because it’s definitely a cheaper option and most importantly, because I find that it improves the bond between locals (considering the fact that the driver is a local). Although the comfort level differs from the model of the car, I still find it a unique experience riding in a foreign car. Using this platform locally may be safe, however I feel highly apprehensive using this overseas in a foreign country. Once again, this platform does have it plus and minus points but overall I still find it safe to use.
In conclusion, through the innovation of these few prominent platforms the way and cost of living is indeed improved, and most importantly through the risks involved, people, especially teenagers, will be able to take more caution when involving themselves in such platforms.
Rachael Fong (2L)