Ankommen, in German “arrival”, is an app created to welcome asylum seekers in Germany. It has been out just since a few weeks, but everyone is already talking about it. The German government wanted it and many different entities participated in the realization of this app.
The app is in French, English, Arabic and Persian. Once you download it, is possible to start a journey through language, uses and costumes, bureaucracy, practical topics and daily habits. This app should be a complete guide to live a life in the Bundesrepublik. A touch handbook to consult and read as a manual.
UI and contents: easier than this…
UI is simple and intuitive. You can choose if you want to proceed with the complete journey, or if you want to move in between the three macro sectors: the language course, info about job positions and asylum requests, lifestyle in Germany.
Learning German starts from basic concepts and slowly allows people to learn an essential vocabulary for their everyday life. Anyone can go on step by step, obtaining medals that allow people to keep track of what they’ve already studied or read.
Texts are very short, perfect to be read during daily breaks between activities or to immediately understand the information you really need.
Living in Germany, what can be better?
In the section “Living in Germany”, the first short chapter is entirely dedicated to the testimonies of some middle-east and European immigrants, who make comparisons between Germany and their native country; generally, the first one wins.
Many topics in the other sections are pretty obvious. But careful, this happens if a western European citizen reads those. It might happen that for an asylum seeker, those topics are not so clear. Some indications make me frown…After what happened in Cologne, the editorial team felt the obligation to add the section about gender equality. But if you read it, it seems like a very unsophisticated idea, for both principles exposed and the audience they want to reach.
Ankommen: the end is just the beginning
“You have a long and difficult journey behind you. But now you have arrived in Germany. But ‘arrived’ means a lot more” Says the welcome text. “Become part of society, take part”.
Ankommen is an app half way between socially useful and self-acclamation. But, even if we can’t say that Germany is the champion of migrants’ rights, is clear that this app is meant to integrate.
It provides essential information so that newcomers can be introduced to the society; it is an instrument of integration that should be present in other countries as well. Sure, some things can be improved from the contents and technical point of view, but still, is a very innovative product, and some reviews on Google Play are the proofs that this app is very useful. We’ll see, hopefully there will be something like this in Italy?