Many companies try to create a great experience for customers. But few are willing to make the changes required to deliver on that promise. In fact most don’t even realize just how bad their experience can be.
The mobile app market is growing faster than a beanstalk. The industry is huge and growing daily, and there is no end in sight. Expectedly, the mobile developer population has boomed, and the number of mobile apps in the market has hit new heights. The revenue generated by the global mobile app industry has skyrocketed.
Safaricom, Kenya’s largest mobile provider launched a mobile App that improved the UX or User Experience especially for smartphone users. Being a mobile network that currently has over 8 million smartphone users this was quite overdue for the behemoth that is Safaricom, a company hosting one of the greatest innovation in mobile money.
MySafaricom working on my IOS couldn’t be better, even though it’s coming many years too late. But with it on my phone, I enjoy the fact that I can have different services on my hands with the same login credentials. With smartphone, long gone are those days, when you have to remember that USSD code for checking your data bundle balance.
With just an app and a data connection, every user is able to view their loyalty bonus points (Bonga) balance, their credit balance and the remaining megabytes or gigabytes on their subscribed data plan.
MySafaricom lets you access mini M-Pesa statements directly within the mobile app but also offers full statements by generating email requests for the same which come as PDF attachments.
This struck me as a little odd and retrogressive(?) since ideally you should be able to access full and interactive M-Pesa statements WITHIN the mobile app itself and even select data ranges as well as conduct real-time data queries using the mobile app.
I think that Safaricom got this bit wrong but considering this is version 1.0 of the MySafaricom mobile app I am sure they will add these interactive features going forward as many a customer would find it massively useful for them to do so.
Getting access to customer service or additional assistance from Safaricom via the MySafaricom mobile app, it has a Live Chat feature. This looks good but one thing I noticed is that it seemed to be embedded from the main website and does not ‘live’ as a native feature of the MySafaricom mobile app? It just did not look like it was built from the ground up for the mobile app experience so I think Safaricom could have done a better job here.
My Service section of the mobile app gives you access to range of common Safaricom services like Sambaza, Skiza, Okoa, Roaming, My SMS, Data, SMS, etc. So, for instance, you can Sambaza airtime or data to another Safaricom subscriber directly via the mobile app. Basically, rather than use clunky USSD or SMS to make these services work, you can do so directly via the mobile app which is super handy.
The Knowledge Base section of the MySafaricom mobile app is a feature that contains frequently asked questions (FAQs) where Safaricom’s services are concerned which you can search through using various keywords and phrases. This is a good feature that seems to have been repurposed from the website that helps users find solutions to their issues without necessarily having to engage customer support
MySafaricom App might have come five years too late, or even more, but I must say it has improved the UX or User Experience for those holding smartphones and are connected to the internet. Safaricom could consider building a number of mobile apps for different use cases, just as the likes of Facebook and Google are doing with theirs.
I personally am looking up for the days when we will have an App just like MySafaricom but tailormade for M-Pesa and since Safaricom have woken up their sleeping innovation giants, I hope it will not be five years too late. If this will be the end of applications like STASH, only time will tell, because in today’s technological age, whatever it is……..We Need An App For It!!!