Study shows strong super-app demand in the US, vindicating providers’ bundling trend

The news: A sizable majority of US consumers want to use a super app to house their digital activities in one place, per a new study from PYMNTS.

The study found that 67% of respondents would like to see at least two of their activities integrated in one place, while around 11% would like one app for managing their entire digital lives.

More on this: PYMNTS categorizes digital activities in 10 types called pillars, which range from financial services to leisure.

  • For the super app report, respondents most often cited travel, entertainment, and shopping as pillars that they want to see integrated.
  • The survey refers to banking as the Cornerstone Piller: Consumers engage with it the most, and it underpins activities for other pillars. PYMNTS also found that 69% of respondents use their bank or credit union’s mobile app, with 47.4% doing so at least weekly.

The report identifies three categories of engaged consumers who would be particularly receptive to super apps:

  • Financial wellness seekers, at 18.08%, place value on having one location for accessing their bank accounts and conducting payments transactions.
  • Information seekers, at 20.38%, want one ecosystem to aggregate information pertaining to “transactional activities” like entertainment, shopping, and traveling. This information would include offers and saved preferences.
  • Convenience seekers, at 10.59%, would like to have one ecosystem that aggregates information that’s relevant to all 10 pillars.

Among generations in the report:

  • Millennials were the most likely to fall into all three interested groups, with 35.5% identifying as Financial wellness seekers, 31.6% as Information seekers, and 45% as Convenience seekers.
  • Generation Z was the least likely to identify with either cohort, with 13.6% as Financial wellness seekers, 17.8% as Information seekers, and 15% as Convenience seekers.

The opportunity: The report provides quantifiable proof of demand for super apps in the US. PYMNTS implies that the interested market includes 173 million people, based on the survey.

The demand for integrated digital routines is also consistent with what venture capitalist and internet pioneer Marc Andreessen has posited about business demand cycles: That vacillating user needs lead to repeated bundling and unbundling of products.

The interest in super apps demonstrates that consumers may view their current experience as too fragmented and complicated, and would prefer bundling their digital activities instead of conducting them separately.

  • In Western countries, this demand will likely be met by financial services firms that take an additive approach, per our recent analysis of financial super apps. This would benefit companies such as US-based PayPal and UK-based Revolut.
  • However, tech giants like Amazon, Google, Apple, and Facebook parent Meta are also in a strong position to venture into the space if they choose to augment their current offerings with financial services.