Company and product news briefs

FCA opens regulatory sandbox to applicants, Accenture introduces virtual agents, plus Perfecto, Testlio and more.

FCA to receive applicants for regulatory sandbox scheme

Christopher Woolard, director of strategy and competition at the FCA, speaking at the Innovate Finance Global Summit on April 11th, announced that on May 9th the FCA would start receiving applications for its regulatory sandbox. The FCA first announced the scheme in a November 2015 report. The sandbox is designed to be a ‘safe-space’ where new products can be shielded from unnecessary compliance requirements.

Woolard said in order to implement the scheme it was necessary to overcome two obstacles: the first was to lower the regulatory costs for new firms to enter the market, the second was to ensure that any risks associated with the project would not be transferred to consumers.

In order to meet the first objective Woolard said that the FCA has set up facilitated authorisation tests that are “easier to meet and the costs and time to get the test up-and-running reduced.”

The FCA has set up several safeguards to make sure that consumers are shielded from any increased risks. These include careful vetting of all projects as well as making sure that “every sandbox firm to have a fair exit strategy for consumers.”

Accenture’s tool uses virtual advisors to help testers

Accenture has announced the release of Accenture MyWizard, a testing automation platform that incorporates virtual agents powered by artificial intelligence, to help testers better implement automation. Accenture says its tool achieves this by analysing data and identifying patterns so that human testers can focus on making strategic testing decisions. The software service provider said it can achieve up to 60% improvements in efficiency in testing.

The platform will include three different virtual agents, each tasked with a different focus area: an intelligent data scientist that will help testers identify patterns, a virtual testing savant that will provide advice on tasks such as test-planning, test-coverage, and staffing, and a virtual scrum master that will help in agile development and alert test managers to any potential issues in the development process.

Perfecto expands its Cloud-based testing service to web browsers

Perfecto Mobile has announced the release of the latest version of its Continuous Quality Lab. The tool has been expanded, and now covers desktop-based web browsers, as well as the mobile apps it already supported previously. Perfecto said that this allows for a comprehensive test strategy that simulates real user conditions, as they browse from home, work, or while commuting.

Testlio attracts $6.25 million investment in first round of funding

Estonian testing company Testlio has attracted $6.25 million in a first round of investment. Californian investment funds Atlos Ventures and Vertex Ventures were behind the drive. The company was started in 2012 with a one million seed fund. Kristel Viidik, CEO of Testlio said that the company aims to “change the way companies think about their testing processes as a whole.”

Chinese regulator to use FIME test tools to assure mobile payments quality

FIME, a French company that ensures that mobile payment systems are compliant with industry standards, has had its EMV RF test bench selected by the Shanghai Integrated Circuit Technology and Industry Promotion Center (ICC) to ensure that vendors are compliant with local mobile payment regulations. The test bench allows the ICC to test devices such as smartphones or tablets, used in EMV payments to make sure they are safe and compliant.

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