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Super App Market

Mobile App Economy

The growth of the mobile economy has made access to products and services easier for people living in remote, developing areas and regions around the world, especially in Africa. With a frequent influx of digital applications for almost any required human service, things are available through a simple click. However, in many developing or less urban regions the full access and functionality of services via digital platforms can be restricted due to infrastructure hurdles. Access to various digital apps is evolving to mitigate infrastructural boundaries through the creation of Super Apps.

A Super App is described as one app that allows for multiple consumer functions that may or might not be linked to each other. A globally popular super app is Alibaba’s Alipay found on the WeChat platform in China. The platform uses mini-apps in the main app to expand its offering through third-party services to users. Some of the third-party services enable users to make payments, purchases, and bookings while socializing on the platform. The model of one platform enables multiples functions such as ride-hailing, banking and communication have emerged from Asia. Aside from Alipay, platforms such as Go-Jek, KaKao, and Paytm are providing a variety of services all managed through one platform.

This form of digital functionality is said to be favorable in developing markets like Asia, and South America and is gradually making headway in the African continent.

Benefits of Super Apps in developing markets.

Cater to space limitations

The apps enable a larger room for access to products and services. All estimates that mobile penetration in Sub-Saharan Africa will reach 67% by 2025. This growth allows for more communication and access to information, however much of the phones purchased in developing markets have limited space for numerous apps. The availability of a platform with multiple service touch points tackles this barrier.

Image Credit: AI Global Media

Service for the unbanked

The super app model permits a way in for financial inclusivity. There are an estimated 2 billion unbanked adults globally, a roughly 62% of Sub-Saharan Africans are not part of the traditional banking system. There are also fragments in the commercial banking system, banked consumers face obstacles of high transaction fees, fragmented markets when working across borders, and inconvenient payment options. Super Apps provides an alternative digital offering that reduces the financial service fence.

Image Credit: Euro Finance

Big Data

In a world driven by big data, the provision of digital access to consumers’ digital behavior gives businesses create insights on how to improve, expand and innovate on services and products to cater to consumers’ needs. This information can also be used to guide consumers through targeted marketing and encourage conversion on the platform. It is worth noting that such platforms are likely to create a monopoly for organizations in this sector as they will have greater insight into consumers.

Mckinsey & Company estimates that Super Apps will generate over $500 billion in revenue by 2025 in Asia and Brazil, such growth in these regions is an example of the possible growth of Super Apps in the continent. The current development of these platforms in Africa is emerging in three main spaces:


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Image Credit: Kaspersky

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