A micro app is a small, mobile application that is designed to perform one, simple task. Micro apps are similar to desktop utility programs. In a microapp architecture, the user interacts with application functionality that runs inside an application container. Each app can function by itself or be combined with other micro apps to create a more complex program. When the complex program invokes a micro-app, it will carry out its specific task.
Focusing on the workflow and encapsulating the workflow into a reusable component promotes reuse during runtimes and ensuresthe end user experiences a consistent workflow between sessions. Because the workflow for a micro app focuses on a specific, self-contained event, the architecture helps address many common technical issues found in larger, monolithic mobile apps -- including improving performance and reducing power consumption and storage.
Beneficial features of micro apps include:
Low cost: Because micro apps have lean functionality, they take less time to build, use very little development resources and require less money for improvements and upkeep.
Independent: Micro apps are designed with a microservice architecture. Each app can function independently and is typically supported by a dedicated database.
Compact and customized: Micro apps are modular, flexible and minimal. The tasks they perform are tailored to improve user experience.
Cross-functional: The simplicity of micro apps makes it possible to deploy them on all types of devices and platforms without the need for separate coding, features or versions.
HTML/HTML5 compliant: Micro apps can be embedded into existing applications or websites.
Supportive of larger apps: Major social media sites have also begun implementing micro apps to perform certain tasks outside of the main platform. Examples of this would be Facebook Messenger or Google Hangouts.