Apps aren’t just changing how we use our devices: they’re turning the tables on how we see the world. And it’s fast. Today, there are more than 1 million applications for both iOS and Android, the mobile economy is estimated to reach $2 trillion in 2017 and a lot of new possibilities are coming up with wearables and the Internet of Things.
All of these advances were based on ideas, both complex and simple, that helped people to connect, to achieve their objectives with more ease and to organize their life in the palm of their hands. These are some of the most groundbreaking, must-have apps which you won’t be able to live without:
The old way: Taxi businesses.
The new combination: Transportation + On-Demand.
How it changed the world: It’s basically a platform for connecting customers to transportation services, which inspired dozens of other companies to replicate to their niches. There’s an Uber-like app for all kinds of services now, emulating its business model in other fields, from daily chores like grocery shopping and laundry to more upmarket products like legal services and even medicine. The spirit of on-demand is the essence of Uber: control, convenience and speed.
The old way: Regular television and movie rentals like Blockbuster.
The new combination: TV + On-Demand.
How it changed the world: Old-school television is losing the battle against Internet streaming. Using Netflix instead of watching reruns or waiting days for the next episode is now a reality for many viewers. With a fair price, users are even turning their backs for pirate streaming channels – which is something the music industry is still trying to achieve. And despite the overall preference for bigger screens, mobile devices can be used to watch your favorite series on the palm of your hand, so Netflix is a groundbreaking app, paving the way for many streaming services such as Hulu, HBO Now or Amazon Prime and changing the way that people watch television.
The old way: Paper maps and radio traffic bulletins.
The new combination: GPS + Traffic Report + Social.
How it changed the world: Google had already mapped thousands of cities with their street cars and satellites, spending billions in the process. Waze did the same using live data from their 50 million user base, enabling the possibility of advertising based on the location of their users. Google was so stunned that they bought Waze for almost a $1 billion, as Waze changed the way people drive, travel and share informations about the road.
The old way: City and tourism guides.
The new combination: Directions + Business Reviews + Social.
How it changed the world: Yelp has been the reason for the success – and failure – of many businesses, especially restaurants and bars. As the niche’s megaphone, Yelp makes both great and small places visible for their positive reviews, with an incredibly fast response. With positive reviews in day one, a restaurant can be very successful. With negative ones, things will be harder. In other words, the food business and its marketing are never going to be the same.
The old way: CD Stores and Music TV Channels (we miss you MTV).
The new combination: Music + On-Demand.
How it changed the world: For many years, music was about gathering albums, listening to them by yourself and waiting for the next one for months (or even years). Today, with just a few clicks, we collect, organize, share and listen collectively to all songs we manage to capture inside Spotify’s database. The industry had to admit that this kind of platform is incredible to reach thousands of old and new fans.
The old way: SMS, MSN and other instant messaging platforms.
The new combination: Real-Time + Messaging.
How it changed the world: It’s undeniable that not only personally but also in the business level Whatsapp changed everything. From customer support to internal communication and promotion marketing, the message speed and almost global engagement turned upside down the way we connect to each other.
These are just a few examples of apps that innovated and dramatically changed the market. But it’s just the tip of the iceberg: there are many undiscovered mixtures waiting to be created, with an increasing expertise and available workforce. Do you have any combination of app ideas in mind?