Apps for everything?

Today I had a very interesting discussion on Facebook regarding apps. A classmate named Sylvia Dickoh from the Mobile Creative program at Hyper Island posted an update regarding a new app. The app is named Sprinter and produced by the clothing brand Björn Borg. It is an app that Björn Borg describes as the new way to find your workout buddy. Sylvia’s caption to the video was “lol”, and then we took it from there.

What we discussed was how native apps for everything seems to have become the new thing. Of course apps are not a new thing, but apps for everything seems to be a hot trend right now. And how far have we come regarding the mobile user behavior according to this new trend? What is effective and what actually brings most value to the user? Eg. should all e-commerce sites transform and start using mobile apps? And would that be based on user research or the assumption that apps are what the users are looking for, and if so — in terms of what?

I think a lot of native apps are based on assumptions on what the users want and a strive from companies to not follow behind regarding the new tech and tech trends. And that we are in a very early stage of the mobile evolution, where we do not know enough yet on how people prefer to transform from social media to websites to apps etc. Which end up in:

“So interesting. People need to get it right. Just because you can doesn’t mean you should!” — Sylvia Dickoh.

Our biggest outcome from the discussion was that we need to be aware of which value we bring, and which value we want to bring, to our users. If we can do stuff on social media, is it necessary to bring the content out from there to apps? And if we do; which content can be moved or combined with new apps?

Watch the Sprinter video:

I want to make clear that I do not say Sprinter is a bad idea, I just want to discuss the solution and choice of platform.

What I find important when you choose to and create apps:

  • Make sure you bring real value to the user
  • Build your product based on user research
  • Create the user experience based on your user research
  • Evaluate and iterate constantly

Please comment and let us discuss this subject!

/ Madeleine