By Brandon Hargrave
Social Media in China is different from anywhere else in the world. While companies across the board are looking to get into China because it Is such a huge market, their government has shut the door on the social media outlets that we are used to here in the states. The Chinese government has reported that there are 802 million people in China that actively use the internet which is almost 3x times the number of users in the US. More importantly that 802 million people represents less than 60% of the total population. This would be a gold mine for social media outlets like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. However simple translations of American apps haven’t gone over well in China and they have created their own apps along with blocking the major apps as a well. For companies that can operate in the space they often drop the ball no understanding the market and people of the country. China more so that anywhere else in the world have doubled down on mobile. During my trip to China last year it was incredible to see the number of people that were on their phones. Now it wasn’t the fact that people were on phone its that everyone was on their phone. Some watched videos while others played games. My favorite was seeing someone watching Dave Chapelle’s latest stand up. Not having normal cellular service was a hurdle that the group had to overcome during my time in China. WhatsApp wasn’t an option that we could use because it was banned by the government, so we all downloaded WeChat. We all is a strong statement many people in the group had problems downloading the app and were left to stick with a larger group. WeChat is the app of all apps. It’s like you took all the popular social media apps from the western world and mashed it into one app. As of August 2018 it had an unbelievable 1.06 billion active users.
That number isn’t even something that I can truly wrap my head around. That is more than 3x times the entire population of the US. Yeah..The entire US. Having such a vast array of features along with the ability for 3rd party app integration makes WeChat a one of a kind app that would make it very difficult for the western social media apps to compete. Can’t forget about TIK TOK the latest global craze that has us feeling like its 2014 again (RIP Vine). It’s popularity has even sparked recording artist to dedicate a song to it.
For more on the top apps in China check out the link below