The reason why Elon Musk wants to make a super app
“Buying Twitter is a way to build X, the app for everything,” Musk said earlier this month. He didn’t explain how X worked, but said that Twitter helped “speed up X’s development by 3 to 5 years.”
Super apps, or as American billionaires call them “all-in-one apps”, have been likened to the Swiss army knife when they combine multiple functions and utilities, from electronic payments, text messaging, search, delivery, car booking and more . go to the market to make friends, look for administrative information…
According to Scott Galloway, professor of marketing at New York University, apps are very popular in Asia because mobile devices are the primary platform for many people to connect to the internet.
By the end of 2021, with 1.25 billion monthly active users, WeChat is the most popular super app and an integral part of life in China. With this app, users can call taxis, transfer money to relatives and friends, and pay in stores. Since 2018, some Chinese cities have been experimenting with WeChat to link user IDs to citizens’ electronic identification systems.
Singapore Grab serves more than 187 million users in 350 cities across Southeast Asia. The system offers transportation, food delivery, transportation and financial services on one platform. GoTo in Indonesia, Paytm in India or KakaoTalk in Korea are also super apps that attract tens of millions to hundreds of millions of users.
During a question-and-answer session with Twitter employees in June, Musk noted that there’s no super app like WeChat outside of Asia. “You can make a living off WeChat in China,” Musk said, adding that he saw an opportunity to develop such an app.
Snapchat once launched the peer-to-peer payment app Snapcash, but it was discontinued in 2018. Facebook and Instagram have also tried to expand beyond social media and messaging, but to no avail.
Adding more tools and services to Twitter could help Musk meet his business goals as he aims to grow Twitter’s user base from 237 million to more than 1 billion.
Published documents show that Musk and his closest associates discussed the idea of adding a digital payment tool to Twitter. He also mentioned the possibility of moving Twitter to the blockchain, although he later said that action had little effect. However, a spokesman for cryptocurrency exchange Binance explained that they have invested $500 million in Musk’s Twitter venture and formed a team to study how blockchain and cryptocurrencies can be brought to the Twitter platform.
Diep Anh (Track Reuters)