Have you heard something like using Messenger for calling an Uber taxi? If you did, most probably you have experience with all-in-one apps. The idea of an all-in-one app is pretty new but it is rising a lot of interest. Today, industry giants like Facebook, Snapchat, Google, and other names network the best existing apps in a single app.
Read this article to know what all-in-one apps are, after all, and if they have a future.
What is an All-In-One App?
Pretty simple. All-in-one apps combine various app features in one interface. In the age of mobile apps, a combination of different apps in a single space seems quite smart as it makes it easy for users to do tasks that they would usually use multiple apps for.
This is a concept that entered the market in recent years. Let’s have a look at how it works in the banking system.
For example, users can manage different accounts in one app. This is a very attractive feature for those who have multiple accounts. Or, they can use accounting software or apply for loans to different banks. Seems pretty cool. That’s why we see all-in-one apps in the market like WeChat, Venmo, Alipay, and Grab with a rating above 3.5. WeChat, for example, has 5.8 million downloads. We all know WeChat as a messaging service. Today, it can be used for everything like ordering food or booking a taxi.
Another example is Broadsoft’s UC-On Communicator. The app considerably improved cross-functional collaboration and saved employee time. How? It eliminated the information silos between internal and external stakeholders for various projects. Before, employees spent hours collecting information during business calls, messaging, and meetings.
How Do All-in-One Apps Work?
There are two ways. First, already existing apps may be used in a functional network. Second, there be all-in-one apps that are built entirely from scratch.
The first version is more popular. They are also called open-loop networking. This idea is taken from the payment processing systems. For example, there are cards that can be used at multiple vendors.
Similar to this system, open-loop apps combine numerous, existing apps in one system. Like with WeChat, you can chat on a messenger and pay for dinner or order Uber.
In contrast, closed-loop networking limits the transaction to one service or company. For example, most gift cards are limited to one or several shops. Today, most apps are closed-loop. They provide services for a specific purpose.
If you ask me, I would say, I prefer open-look apps or all-in-one apps rather than closed-loop apps. However, we see that they are not very popular. If this is such a cool staff, why is it so low in popularity? Let’s dive into this question.
The Popularity of All-in-One Apps
To say that all-in-one apps are popular as of today is not quite true. They are indeed popular when it comes to the banking and online payment industry. Some apps like Venmo, Paytm, etc have been very successful. In some countries, almost 30–40% of all payments are done through all-in-one apps.
Having said that, we also witness that all-in-one apps are more popular in China. Almost every family has WeChat in China providing every features a person could need.
So, why are they popular in China and not elsewhere in the world? Part of the reason is functionality. All-in-one apps in some sense take away from the user experience. However, these considerations are in the mind of industry giants like Facebook. Most probably, we will see easy-to-use apps that combine multiple apps in one space to gain popularity in other parts of the world. At least, at present, some industry giants like Facebook, Snapchat, Google are seriously considering that.
Another reason why all-in-one apps are not popular is the risk of privacy. Take the example of WeChat. WeChat has all your info and reports the data to the government. Your whole data like browsing history, shopping patterns, bank details, etc are stored in WeChat. Therefore, WeChat has received significant negative reactions for this reason.
So, data privacy is a major concern for all-in-one apps. Unless this issue is tackled, these apps will not be as popular as they seem to be.
Having said this, let’s see the good sides of these apps. Is there a future for all-in-one apps?
Is There a Future for All-In-One Apps?
There are several considerations that make me think that all-in-one apps will gain popularity. And here is why.
We all know that distance work is gaining widespread acceptance even with large corporations. This is especially true amid the COVID-19 pandemic. What does this mean for a regular employee? It means that they have to use a large number of applications to engage remotely. In some sense, this has caused some complexities as employees have to use dozens of nonintegrated apps. According to a study, 71% of employees believe they have been given too many tools which make their work more complex.
Multiple apps take too much space
If there are so many applications needed to run a business, how are the devices managing the space? In fact, these applications take up too much space which can slow down devices. When you work remotely, calling tech support may become a hassle. So, you really need a speedy computer or smartphone that will not cause many problems.
Multiple apps require too much administrative support
When there are so many apps in a company, someone needs to manage everything like subscription, user permissions, and so on. All-in-one apps can reduce the administrative burden and free the company from hiring special personnel for managing complex software.
Too much time spent
It’s unbelievable but research by RingCentral found out that employees toggle between apps ten times an hour, equating to as many as 32 days of lost productivity. So, basically, each company will save 32 days per employee if they switch to all-in-one apps.
We have indicated several reasons why all-in-one apps will gain popularity. Productivity is one of the main issues that will make companies consider shifting to all-in-one apps. Combined with distance work and the need for multiple applications, these considerations give a reason to believe that soon we will see in the market a new generation of super apps.
On the other hand, we have indicated that data privacy and user experience are major concerns. It’s super easy to track personal information when it is stored in one location. This is the reason that super apps are popular only in China so far. Time will show whether the industry can tackle these major concerns. If they do, we will see a new generation of apps in the market.
As a company in Eastern Europe, Addevice is ready to meet these current demands. We have extensive experience in closed-loop applications but can easily shift to all-in-one apps. Our team is ready to meet the challenge. Drop us a line if you have an idea of building an all-in-one app. This may be an app specifically designed for your business to boost productivity at the workplace. You may also need to develop just an MVP or put simply — the prototype of your app. Whatever your purpose, we are here to help you. To have an idea about cost calculation, click here.
And if you don’t want to rely just on one company, here is a blog post on how to choose the right partner for outsourcing.