Tata Group Announced To Launch Its Super App Called ‘Tata Neu'
Tata Group has finally announced to launch its much-anticipated super app called ‘Tata Neu' on April 7, as it attempts to take on Amazon and Jio Platforms amid the stupendous growth in the consumer digital economy space in the 'mobile-first' country. The company made the announcement through a teaser image on the app’s Google Play Store page. It had started publicly advertising the super app for the first time along with the ongoing Indian Premier League tournament. Currently open for only Tata Group employees, the super app promises "super rewards" and brings airlines, hotels, medicines and groceries in one place.
Years-in-the-making and riddled with multiple delays and buggy performance, TataNeu is the salt-to-software giant’s attempt to go head-to-head with rivals while Tata focused on more legacy businesses. The app will offer facilities like shopping, flight, hotel booking, as well as payments facility to pay for items bought in stores and utility bills. The app clubs several of Tata Group services including some such as online grocer BigBasket and e-pharmacy platform 1Mg that the firm has purchased in recent years. TataNeu will also offer users the ability to send people money and pay broadband, electricity, water and satellite TV bills and secure loans. Tata is hoping that customers will find its one-stop shop offering and rewards lofty enough to make the bold switch. Tata plans to offer them “NeuCoins” as reward, where one NeuCoin is equivalent to one Indian rupee. The rewards are one of the major focuses for Tata Group as it attempts to build a “connective layer” for its services that operate in a wide range of categories. If successful, the 155-year-old giant is positioned to conjure up the largest loyalty program in the country.
A super app brings all digital services and apps developed by a company on a single platform, so users need not use separate apps for different requirements. The super app is like a mall that houses various brands and shops across businesses and verticals under one roof. A country or region becomes super app ready when a large percentage of digital users prefer smartphones to desktop computers, and an ecosystem of apps customised to local needs is not yet evolved. In India, the majority of those experiencing the Internet for the first time are doing so on their smart phones. This is one of the main reasons why Indian companies are looking at building super apps.
India's consumer digital economy is projected to reach a massive $800 billion by 2030 and online retailAwill make the bigger pie, according to market research firm RedSeer. The online retail market in the country is likely to grow to $350 billion in gross merchandise value (GMV) over the next decade. Apart from increased revenue realisation due to consolidation of services at one place, such apps also provide companies with large swaths of consumer data which can then be harnessed to learn more about user behaviour. Several other internet conglomerates such as Amazon, Paytm, Reliance Jio have built their versions of super apps, where they provide a bouquet of services such as payments, content streaming, shopping, travel bookings, groceries, etc.
The very concept of a conglomerate trying to keep a customer within its own ecosystem for most services increases the possibility of a monopoly. There are concerns of privacy in cases where a super app has onboarded third party service providers. Experts say data collected by the master app could be used to train machines in artificial intelligence and predict consumer behavior even more accurately. This is a reason why super apps have not grown in markets like the US and EU.