The Gov’t Has Made 200 Apps But Most Of Them Are Pretty Useless, Says Bangi MP

Dr. Ong Kian Ming has gone through all the apps and come up with recommendations on what the government should do with the apps.
(credit: Tech TRP/ Malay Mail)

Subscribe to our Telegram channel for the latest stories and updates.

Mobile apps are essential in our lives. We use them every single day as they make our lives significantly easier. Most of the apps we use were created by private companies. Some of us might have one or two government-created apps on our devices. For example, the MySejahtera app. But there are a lot more government-created apps than we care to use or even hear of. The government is even considering an anti-hacking app!

Back in August 2022, a member of parliament (MP), Wong Shu Qi, asked the government how many apps they have created. When she received the answer later, she was shocked by the fact that there were 200 apps by 93 government agencies.

There’s a website that keeps track of all the apps created by the government and the more surprising thing is, they even made an app to keep track of the apps (appception)!

Another MP, Dr. Ong Kian Ming, took an interest in this news and he tasked his intern to collect the ratings, reviews and downloads info for all the apps from Google Play Store. He then studied the information and came up with 12 recommendations. Even though the website above supposedly keeps track of all the apps, he noted that the MyBayar Saman app created by PDRM is not listed on the website. So, this means he will be going through 199 apps.

His 12 recommendations are quite long, but we will try and summarized all of them. He recommends getting rid of apps that received very little attention. He noted that 97 out of 199 apps received less than 1000 downloads. He said the most useless app is MyWC2U, which help users locate the nearest public toilet.

He also said that the apps should fulfill their functions. For example, the I-Kredikom app provides users with details of licensed moneylenders, but he said scammers use this app to advertise their own service instead.

The next recommendation from him would be to listen to user feedback and reviews. He noted one app was downloaded 500,000 times but received poor reviews because they are not responding to user complaints.

He added apps should be updated regularly to fix bugs and add more functions, but he said even regularly updated apps received very little download. For example, the MyPotholes app.

He recommends that ministers, deputies and chief secretaries should use the app created by their ministry/agencies because this will lead to a better app experience.

In addition to that, he recommends adding more functionality to frequently used apps and consulting with private sectors if they have better alternatives and working with them if they do instead of just creating another app that nobody uses.

He mentioned when the government contracts with the private sector to deliver services, these companies’ performance should be monitored by how well their apps are doing.

Another recommendation from him is the federal government should collaborate with state governments (as well as local councils) to enhance apps for local services.

The MP said the Malaysian Administrative Modernisation and Management Planning Unit (MAMPU) should provide guidance and consulting to the various government ministries and agencies about the introduction of best practises for the distribution of apps and serve as the primary coordinating organisation. MAMPU is the one that is keeping track of all the government apps.

The politician also added that user data privacy must be protected. He used the MySejahtera app as an example because the app was not handled by the Ministry of Health.

Last but not least, he said the government agencies should check the reviews and ratings to make sure they are not fake, so that it “cannot be artificially increased by positive “bot” ratings or artificially reduced to make an app look bad.”

A quick check on the website that keeps track of the apps shows there are 29 new apps in 2022. We don’t need that many apps in our lives. The resources and money spent should go towards improving existing apps instead.

Share your thoughts with us via TechTRP's Facebook, Twitter and Telegram channel for the latest stories and updates.

Previous Post

We Dig The New Roguelite Shovel Knight Game [Review]

Next Post

You Can Soon Join A WhatsApp Call By Just Clicking On A Link

Related Posts