Agile Innovation Update – April 2015

Each month we bring you the FreshMinds Agile Innovation Update. This month we’re looking at Whatsapp’s rapid growth, Facebook Messenger’s new payments facility and potential new innovations from Amazon.

SMS messaging trails behind as 30 billion Whatsapp messages are sent per day

According to data from the Economist, Whatsapp has overtaken text as the most popular form of messaging. At the end of last year, consumers were sending 30 billion Whatsapp messages per day – that’s 10 billion more than the number of SMS messages that were sent. These figures reflect a broader trend of growth within messaging apps, which have seen more than a 100% increase in total users in the last year. This shift in consumer behaviour has wide-ranging implications for everything from marketing to product and service development. We’re already seeing brands trying to tap into these areas: from Clarks, with its Whatsapp-based marketing campaign to Facebook’s new service launch, which we discuss below.

Facebook launches payment facility within Messenger app in the US

Last year we explored reports that Facebook was looking to integrate a payment facility into its Messenger app. This now seems to be imminent, with Facebook stating that a new service to enable US users to transfer money to one another at no cost will be made available in the coming months. Facebook is just one of many tech companies making movements in this space. Snapchat introduced a similar service last year and Google looks to be eyeing up this territory too. With this so many companies innovating in this space who will rule the roost?

Amazon introduces smart device to enable in-home ordering at the tap of a button

“Is it an April Fool? It’s got to be.” These were the words running through many people’s minds (and ours!) yesterday with the news that Amazon had introduced a Dash Button. But is the device – which allows consumers to order items from the comfort of their own homes at the tap of a button – the real deal? The Dash Button can be attached to appliances or surfaces around the home and is designed to help customers replenish everyday items when they are running low. Pressing the button triggers an order to be made via your Amazon account which is then delivered to your default address. If the service takes off (and isn’t a joke!) it has the potential to transform retail as we know it. But are consumers ready to turn their homes into branded one-stop shops and stay loyal to those companies partnering with Amazon?