News / Is 2016 the Year of The Message App?
By Liz Scherer, Jan 12, 2016

Magic eight ball says ‘signs point to yes ‘– at least if you believe the hype surrounding Facebook’s Messenger, which, according to FB’s VP of messaging products David Marcus, is on a path as a one-stop solution to phone numbers and apps entirely. Contently’s Joe Lazaukus writes that the end goal is to redefine how consumers interact with businesses, a “world where commerce, services, and communications are all completed in a chat thread instead of through a clunky combination of mobile sites and apps.” Still, we need to ask ourselves how message apps fit into regulated industries, in particular healthcare?

Let’s look at the usage stats. Recent data from Infinite Convergence’s small survey of professionals within regulated industries demonstrate that at least a third of respondents use mobile messaging regularly throughout the day and 91% at least a few times weekly. Among healthcare respondents, email still rules the day, with 65% indicating that email is used most frequently for business communications, and significant numbers concerned about message security. Still, like most consumers, there is an interest in/usage of third-party message apps, including FB Messenger and WhatsApp. Bear in mind, however, that these healthcare industry numbers trend significantly below the composite global picture, which demonstrates steady growth in the use of message apps:

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