Here’s the complete list of Zalo features:
- Text messaging
- Image and multimedia sharing
- Getting information and updates from official accounts of organizations, brands, and celebrities
- Consumer loan services via Zalo Bank ( Shinhan Bank Vietnam)
- Transportation bookings and public transport information
- Doctor appointment bookings
- Weather updates
- Zalo Pay to pay utility bills
- Zalo shop where you can browse and buy popular consumer goods.
Zalo does much more than allow you to share images and texts (it’s called a “super app” for a reason). Impressive, right?
That’s the essence of a “super app” – provide the user with a range of features that go beyond the app’s primary purpose. Now, let’s talk about how to use them.
Zalo Official Accounts
As mentioned, Zalo is being used by a lot of government agencies, celebrities, and companies in Vietnam, which means that you can follow their official accounts and get updates.
To do so, you have to click on the second menu item at the bottom of the app’s environment – Contacts – and select Official Accounts.
It’s the second tab in the menu at the top of the screen (as you can see in the below image, the first one is Contacts).
This is definitely one of the biggest reasons Zalo is so popular in the home market.
Everyone who has used it knows that it comes with a ridiculously big selection of awesome stickers for just about any occasion or emotion.
Looking for the right one is pretty easy. Just select the sticker icon on the bottom of the screen while in the conversation mode and explore the categories.
The Zalo Sticker Bar that you can check out also has an impressive selection of cute free stickers for you. Just select the one you like, scan the QR code you’ll find on each sticker’s page and just like that, it’ll be added to your app.
The selection of the stickers is growing every day, as Zalo becomes more popular, so you won’t run out of great options to share with your friends.
With Zalo, you can start a group chat and keep in touch with your friends, family, and colleagues.
As you can see in the below image, you can use the calendar, reminders, send media files, and even join private groups with a code sent by the group owner (the so-called “Offline Groups”).
With Zalo Shop, you can easily buy popular items online.
There’s a good selection of products from the local sellers, so if you buy things online, chances are you’ll use Zalo to make a purchase at least once.
Indeed, built-in financial services are definitely something that we don’t see a lot in apps, so this one is what makes Zalo a true super app.
The process of buying is very easy + there’s a never-ending supply of discounts from online stores.
This year, Shinhan Bank Vietnam has launched a smart consumer loan on Zalo, which you can review and apply for.
The monthly interest rate on such a loan ranges between $1.33 and $2.4 and can be provided to users with the minimum monthly wage paid through a local bank account.
To view the offer, click the More option on the main menu, where you’ll see something like this.
Another feature that makes Zalo so popular is, Transport is accessible from the More menu option.
Thanks to it, you can check public transport routes, travel durations, and the cost.
Using Transport is very easy: just type in a starting location and a destination, and the app will give you all the details.
Use this one to book hotels, homes, and rooms throughout Vietnam. Thanks to the integration with Booking.com, you’ll get a decent range of options to choose from.
Finding and booking a stay is very user-intuitive and easy; in fact, it reminds a bit of Booking.com.
Here, let’s take a look at the app’s environment and how to navigate its features.
Zalo Messages Panel
The first panel on the main menu, it displays the chat rooms and lets you find friends with the contacts from your phonebook.
Here, you can also update your account information, select a new image, and start a chat with someone.
The menu marked by + at the top right corner also has a link to the Zalo desktop app, Zalo calendar, and the QR scanner.
Zalo Contacts Panel
This is where you view and manage your friends and official accounts and add your bio description.
Like any other Zalo option, finding and connecting with friends is easy. If you’d like to check if any of your Facebook friends are using the app, too, you can do that by linking your own account.
To connect to Facebook, click on Start in the Find More Friends section.
Zalo Groups Panel
As mentioned above, this is where you view, manage, and create groups.
Find the Groups option on the main menu (the one in the middle).
Zalo Timeline Panel
The next main menu item, Timeline is the place for sharing your stories by publishing posts to your groups and private chat rooms.
If you get a response to your story from a friend, you’ll see the notifications here, too.
Just like on the Facebook app, you’ll be able to update your friend’s information very quickly in this menu option to see what they’re up to.
Zalo More Panel
Here, you’ll access complete profile information as well as review the top-selling items in the shop, see popular stickers and get recommendations for official accounts.
Also, the menu just below your profile picture provides access to the options that we’ve reviewed, including Bank, Travel, Sticker, Shop, and Transport.
#Zalo does much more than allowing you to share images and texts. It’s called a #superapp for a reason.
– Tweet This
Zalo: How to Register
This one is pretty easy. Assuming that you’ve downloaded and installed Zalo whether, from Google’s Play Store or Apple’s Store, you’ll be greeted with the following screen with a quick introduction as well as the Login/Registration option.
Choose your preferred language and proceed with the registration.
As you can see, there are three language options available, so the developers will need to work with a translation service to add more and expand the reach (in our experience, the Vietnamese copy was great but some locally relevant content parts were not translated to English).
During the registration process, you’ll be asked to provide your full name as well as your phone number.
That’s basically it. It takes about 30 seconds to take care of this and you can start using the app.
When you’ll land on Zalo’s home for the first time, take a look at the menu below where you’ll find five panels where you can find more features: Messages, Contacts, Groups, Timeline, and More
What’s the Future of Zalo?
At this point, the creators of Zalo are clearly focusing on the home market where customer love is.
Indeed, this is a clever strategy because the low smartphone penetration in Vietnam shows that it still has a lot of room for growth.
Currently, Zalo is slowly expanding beyond its home market, so it’s reasonable to assume that it can become one of the leaders in the Southeast Asian messaging app market.
Should you try it?
If super apps are your thing or something that sounds interesting to you, then sure.
It definitely has the potential to help not only with communication but stuff like getting around.
However, note that the app’s audience and features are still fairly limited geographically.