The Age of Super Apps

A super app is the front end of a platform into which mini apps (or mini programs) can be published for users to activate as needed. A super app is like a Swiss army knife — with a range of component tools (mini apps) that the user can use and remove as needed. Super apps are trending because users, especially the younger generation born in the age of smartphones, demand mobile-first experiences that are powerful and easy to use. – Gartner.1

A super app can also be thought of as a marketplace of services and offerings. These services and offerings could be in-house or third-party. The key element is multifunctionality. A super app should be able to cater to a wide demographic and offer a range of services covering a population’s daily needs. 2

A super app should be inclusive; it should be made available across age groups, genders, social groups, economic classes and should be able to address the needs across a wide spectrum of usage.

Asia vs USA

So far super apps have been mainly successful in Asia. Surveys from KPMG, Bain, and the World Bank have all shown that Asian consumers tend to adopt new digital technologies, including super apps, more than their American counterparts.

Beyond these broad trends, there are also specific aspects of Asian culture that may have lent themselves better to super app ecosystems. For example, a much more widespread culture of monetary gift-giving in China has been critical to the growth of WeChat’s digital payment system, which enables users to send digital “red envelope” money transfers to friends and family.

There are also organizational and financial reasons why super apps haven’t taken off in the U.S. When each app can serve as a channel for advertising, companies may be reluctant to consolidate multiple app services into a single offering because doing so might cannibalize ad revenues.3

Evolution of Super Apps

Super apps offer the benefit of a one-stop platform for multiple life-moment needs that consumers have. Opening a single super app is much more convenient for users than managing dozens of individual apps.

Types & Features of Super Apps

  • Financial services: Bill payments, Mobile recharges, Investments (Share markets, stocks, mutual funds), Insurance selling, Credit Checks and Scoring, Loan services and multiple more
  • Communication: Messaging, Calling, Video & social media
  • Transportation: Ridesharing, Ride-Hailing, Food delivery, Package delivery, Ticket booking (flight, rail, bus)
  • Media: Video and Music content, News content
  • Retail: eCommerce (grocery, fashion & others), Hotel bookings, Event ticket bookings, e-pharmacies4

Characteristics of Super Apps5

Global Super App Landscape – Key players


  • Scalability/ Adaptability – To every changing market trends and user expectations
  • Integration – compatibility and data synchronization must be managed effectively.
  • Security – Protecting user data and maintaining privacy.
  • App Performance – Balance functionality with resource optimization
  • User Experience Complexity – Maintaining a smooth and intuitive user experience.

One of the biggest drawbacks of super apps is the risk of over-centralization. By relying on one app for all your digital needs, you become dependent on that app and are at the mercy of the developer.

SLK Prowess in App development

SLK’s experience in App development extends right from the initial stage of thought leadership to the development of complex apps for our banking customers. With over 200 Mobile and UI/ UX professionals with upwards of 10 years of experience. Including super app development for our banking customers providing a wide range of financial services.

SLK’s Mobile Banking Expertise

Conclusion and Outlook

Super apps have garnered tremendous popularity in several parts of the world. These regions have embraced the convenience and comprehensive nature of Super apps, providing users with a wide range of services within a single platform. Whether or not Super apps will achieve the same level of adoption and success in other parts of the world is yet to be determined.

Gartner estimates:

  1. 15 popular super apps have been downloaded 4.6 billion times around the world with
  2. 2.68 billion active users.
  3. By 2027 more than 50% of the global population will be active users of super apps

The data suggests a growing interest and potential for Super apps globally, with projections indicating that a significant portion of users will embrace multiple Super Apps in the coming years. As the Super App landscape continues to evolve, only time will tell how these platforms will shape the digital experiences of users worldwide.

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