Digital Products II. Communication or Things?

Open and Closed Products

Accordingly, we may divide apps into two major categories: open and closed products. The criteria for this distinction is purpose, the processing of time and the currency we use.

Paying with Communication. Data, Time and Advertising

The distinction also defines how we pay for a digital product and how much time we spend with it. In closed products we pay with our attention and our behavior. Both are then being mixed to create a profile that is the target for tailored advertising.

Shut up and take my money

On the opposite, open products have clear-cut endings and beginnings, because of their well-defined purposes and outcomes. I want to accomplish something, therefore I open an app. When I’m done, I close it.

A pragmatic distinction

Obviously, the distinction between open and closed products has its flaws. When shopping, you are always tempted to look at and buy other goods than the ones you were looking for. And who never got lost in the infinity of online reviews while searching for the perfect article, ending up in frustration, buying nothing or anything, just to get it over with?



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Robin Baum

Robin Baum

UX Designer. Occasionally writing about design, marketing and everyday practices from a cultural point of view. Cologne / DE