Skype, Facebook Messenger, and BBM among list of worst rated business apps

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Skype, Facebook Messenger and BlackBerry’s BBM are considered among the worst rated apps for business executives, according to a new survey released by ARC, the application resource centre of software testing provider Applause.

According to the metrics, Messenger bottomed out at an average rating of 31/100 for Android and iOS, behind Skype (34.5), LINE (46.5), Google Hangouts (47), BBM (48), and The Weather Channel app (49), now owned by IBM. In contrast, Yahoo’s weather app scored an average of 78, while the top performing apps were note taker Color Note (93), 360 Security (89.5), and Duolingo (88.5).

Anyone querying ARC’s decision to include weather apps alongside the more usual collaboration tools will find the following explanation in the report – “because the weather dictates so many decisions in a business person’s life, from what to wear to travel schedules.” Personal assistant apps, such as Siri and Cortana, were excluded because the report argues the market is not quite ready yet.

However, the key finding from the report shows how consumer-level communication apps, from Skype to Facebook, are not cutting the mustard for the enterprise. So, theoretically, would the enterprise equivalents – Facebook at Work, Skype for Business – score more highly? Apparently not; Skype for Business had an average score of only 22.0, albeit only from 4,000 reviews compared to the consumer product’s almost 450,000.

As for other messaging tools, LinkedIn (average score 44) performed poorly, behind Messenger by Google (54), Yammer (54.5), Slack (64.5), and WhatsApp (65.5). The latter two are of particular note, in the case of Slack because recent figures from Okta show it is gaining serious traction in the enterprise, while the latter is now offering end to end encryption in its messaging – a way to ensure enterprise-grade security but only the beginning if the FBI/Apple imbroglio is anything to go by.

“Consumers value apps with elegant user interfaces and simple navigation, accurate information, relevant notifications, quick launch times, fast performance, and engaging and fun experiences,” the report concludes.

Do you agree with the report’s findings? You can find out more here.

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