Concepts are useful for putting a name to something because then you can go forth and talk about it. One of the main reasons it’s important to talk about omniexperience is because it’s different from multiexperience in a few important and actionable ways for those solving business problems with the software.
Definition of multiexperience
We live in a world with different types of devices and different interaction models. We have phones, tablets, PCs, as well as smart TVs, smart homes, and Alexa.
What does CLICK even mean when talking to Alexa? Or, when reading a “notification” on an Apple Watch? This is what multiexperience means.
It’s not very controversial or interesting, but it’s all so obvious. It only becomes interesting when you consider the way companies need to adapt their approach to software, and more importantly, to customer experience, as a result of all these devices and interaction models. Enter omniexperience!
Definition of omniexperience
Why do we need another word — omniexperience? Because multiexperience only tells us what’s happening, it doesn’t tell us what to do.
The word itself, omniexperience, evokes omnichannel. It’s almost liked your brain hears channels then it morphs into the experience. We’re familiar with the changes that omnichannel demanded — a rethinking of business processes around the customer.
Omniexperience is an imperative to be on all devices as is with omnichannel to be on all channels. However, the change is that companies have to consider the unique possibilities of each individual platform’s experience on what they do.
Why send a notification to an Apple Watch with a URL to find out more… when the URL can’t be clicked? Because the developer was lazy (or unskilled or unconcerned with the user), that’s why.
Basically, this is a fancy way of saying that companies need to think about how they will interact with their customers given the capabilities of each platform.
And it’s not just “business capabilities” (like an actionable notification), but the experience of what’s delivered.
I’ve used a bunch of apps in healthcare that are clearly just websites “reformatted” as mobile apps. Do you know how I know? Because they don’t respect the accessibility settings on my phone.
The font is too small to read on a small display. And there are many other accessibility features that make the iPhone a great platform for those who need a little help. I find it ironic that health apps are among the worst groups of apps that collectively ignore accessibility.
Multiexperience tells us the world we live in and omniexperience tells us how to find and create new opportunities.
Two things that are different from the past
- We assumed computing was one thing, and it was a PC. Now it’s all these different things, even your car is a computer on wheels (that can see!).
- You have to change the way we think about and develop software. In the past when computers meant PC with a browser, we could “write once, run anywhere.” That is no longer the case, and that means the ROI of software development changes. The platform informs the experience, and we must consider it in the earliest stages of solution conception.
Not only does the ROI model change and does “write once, run anywhere” fail… other basic assumptions need to be reconsidered. The idea that the software you’re creating should be on every platform is incorrect. Just because you have an app on iOS doesn’t mean you need one on Android.
Just because in the past a notification meant sending an email, that no longer is the case and the words we use to define solutions need to change.
When you try to have “every platform supported,” you get the lowest common denominator and punish everywhere with bad software.
Yet, this isn’t such an easy problem to solve. If less of the demographic of wealthy customers use Android, and a healthcare solution on iOS is better, are hospitals “discriminating” against the less-wealthy? (I don’t believe so, but it takes thoughtful consideration on how these solutions are communicated to management and the market.)
“Companies that think about how to build this properly are the ones that will win. This is a 10-year opportunity.”
The benefits of multiexperience and omniexperience are enormous.
- Consider thinking about Omniexperience as a way to discuss the impacts of experience and how the platform informs the experience of your software development strategy.
- Consider the possibilities that each platform provides, and how these possibilities could improve your customers’ engagement with your offering.
- Consider new ways to develop ROI models for software creation… because your customers will choose the solution that’s best for them. When you write software that’s “lowest common denominator” so that it supports the broadest audience… that’s best for you, not for your customers.
All the capabilities you have to stop and think for the long haul. In the end, everything is a computer. Software that creates the experience is what it’s all about.
They allow you to capture the opportunities that were not possible before. Everything is now in your pocket and at your fingertips.
To facilitate the new digital experience securely, read how to “Enable future-ready public services” for better insights.