With more than a billion mobile consumers in India, approximately 90 per cent of the population have access to a mobile phone. Mobiles devices are undoubtedly the most ubiquitous modern technology in most of the developing countries, majority of people have access to a mobile phone than to a bank account, electricity or even well cleaned water.
In India mobile communications and service sector have been one of the most visible manifestation of the extraordinary digital accomplishments seen in the past ten years— from offering and providing basic access to education and health related information to making cash payments to crowd sourcing- this growing list firmly establishes us as a ‘mobile tech first’ economy. However, Legacy communications systems i.e. fixed line access have been virtually supplanted by mobile systems in India and in the rest of the developing world, on contrary to being supplemented by them in already developed countries like United States.
Not surprisingly thus many mobile innovations—like:
- multi-SIM card phones
- low-value recharges and
- mobile payments
Have acquired the soubriquet of ‘reverse innovation’, having taken root in currently developing economies and spreading from there in a very fast pace.
A recent survey conducted by MindStick Software shows that new and innovative mobile applications that are embedded in local realities have a much better chance of success in addressing development challenges as compared with applications transplanted from elsewhere. In particular, locally developed applications are much more likely to address existential concerns such as digital literacy and affordability among others.
One of the positive fallout in the huge success of mobile communications has been the rapid development of highly innovative bite sized software codes popularly known as mobile software applications or in short simply ‘apps’ resident on smart hand held gadget. These apps use kinds of data stream either continuously or on a one-off (sometimes on-demand) basis to deliver information and perform specific tasks desired by the users.
· These functions offer gaming, social networking, navigation, utilities, health, and education, among others, and changed the entire perspective of mobile devices by revolutionising the way phones are used. Apps are quite different from traditional mobile value added services (MVAS) since they are much richer in content, usually operate on smart devices and mostly depend on the internet to functionIt is now a convention to group SMS, MMS, call related services and data access as standard services that lie outside the domain of what is classified as mobile application software or apps