The $1,000 App: When Your App Can’t Do It All

by Net Future Institute on April 3, 2013

Even though some apps are extremely targeted, there are times that a business needs to go outside to supplement what they offer.

The recent announcement by Magellan Jets that it had partnered with yet another app provider had me wondering.

The Boston-based private aviation company already boasted creating the first private jet app some time ago. Magellan Jets app users can input their itinerary, see prices and ultimately book a jet, though the final stage generally involves an email or phone conversation, with a charge that could be in the tens of thousands of dollars.

The company just hooked up with UK-based iVIP, where VIP Black members pay $1,000 ($999.99 to be precise) and, after downloading the app, validate that their net worth is well over $1 million.

iVIP already has more than 150,000 active members worldwide across all versions, according to Matthew Rowe at iVIP in London.  “Around 30 percent of our members are US-based, the UK has about 10 percent, with the rest spread globally (China, Russia, Australia, France, etc.).”

The iVIP app is essentially used as a supplement for the Magellan app user, to provide services outside of booking a jet.

“We have a very successful app,” says Greg Belezerian, vice president and one of the founders of Magellan Jets. He counts his users as “not millions,” since booking a private jet is “still very expensive.”

However, the flyers often travel outside the United States and seek all-inclusive needs. “A lot of our clients go to Europe and they may want to rent a nice car so they may want to know where they can get a Bentley,” says Belezerian.

And this is where the supplemental app approach comes in. “And a lot of our clients like to use technology and they expect what is the coolest and most up to date, says Belezerian.

The iVIP app provides access to all those additional services, from car rentals, hotels, events and various exclusive deals based on where the traveler is.

I find this to be somewhat of an intriguing approach, of complementing the core competencies of what a business does with additional services via someone else’s app.

There are times when booking a private jet is just not enough.

  Chuck Martin is editor of mCommerce Daily at MediaPost and writes the daily MobileShopTalk. He is author of “The Third Screen,” “The Smartphone Handbook,” and the soon-to-be-published “Mobile Influence.” He is CEO of Mobile Future Institute and a frequent mobile keynote speaker around the globe.

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