A Down­load Draught

There is no dearth of gov­ern­ment apps to­day but for their adop­tion to pick up there is a need to port th­ese to pop­u­lar stores in an ac­cel­er­ated man­ner.

Voice&Data - - CONTENT -

As they say, it’s of­ten bet­ter not to rein­vent some­thing that al­ready ex­ists. The poor state of adop­tion of gov­ern­ment apps in the Mo­bile Seva store val­i­dates the say­ing. The best per­form­ing app in the store in terms of down­loads is UPOne, which had 17,365 down­loads at the time of writ­ing this ar­ti­cle, fol­lowed by the M-gov App Store app. No other app, of a to­tal of 634 live apps in the store, had crossed even the 10,000 mark in terms of down­loads. In fact, all the apps put to­gether had a cu­mu­la­tive down­load of 340,421 as of date.

This eas­ily con­trasts with may gen­eral apps in Google Play and Ap­ple App Store that have seen more than a mil­lion down­loads, which is con­sid­ered a mod­est bench­mark of suc­cess.

When the gov­ern­ment an­nounced its Mo­bile Seva store in De­cem­ber 2013, it was touted as a next big thing. How­ever, the very fact that the apps were not ported for the pop­u­lar plat­forms like An­droid and iOS led to a low vis­i­bil­ity for the apps. That is chang­ing now with the gov­ern­ment rec­og­niz­ing the value of lev­er­ag­ing ex­ist­ing pop­u­lar plat­forms that have seam­less ecosys­tems de­vel­oped around them.

One pointer to a po­ten­tial gap in the de­sign and de­liv­ery of gov­ern­ment apps may be seen in the fact that while the my­gov. in web­site notes 1.21 mil­lion reg­is­tered users for My­Gov as well as more than 131,000 sub­mis­sions across 198 tasks, the linked app on Google Play store shows an in­stalled range of 10,000 to 50,000 only. It would be im­por­tant for the con­cerned gov­ern­ment agen­cies to iden­tify the in­hibitors and take cor­rec­tive mea­sures to re­al­ize the full po­ten­tial reach of th­ese apps.

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