Charlie Custer, editor of Tech In Asia joined us to talk on everything about Wechat by Tencent, the most popular messaging app in China by one of the top Chinese internet companies and why Facebook and Snapchat are now focused on cloning it for the western markets. We discuss why Wechat is so successful not just in gathering users but also its uncanny ability to monetise with various revenue streams and also Tencent’s history with QQ, it’s former desktop messaging app. We touched on the conversation on why Chinese companies copy and also the motivation behind Charlie’s latest project, the Tech in Asia podcast.
Here are the interesting notes and links to the discussion:
- The story of Charlie Custer (@chinageeks)
- Tencent and WeChat
- An introduction to Tencent and how it started from QQ, a desktop messaging app and subsequently move to WeChat. (News archive on Tencent on Tech in Asia)
- What is WeChat? How does WeChat work as a messaging app?
- What is the business model for WeChat?
- How does third party developers and businesses get on WeChat? A discussion on WeChat public accounts (共众号) and subscription accounts (订阅号).
- Why is WeChat has significantly high ARPU $7 vs Whatsapp ARPU $1 / Facebook ARPU $1.18 for APAC, $2.5 for worldwide for Q1 2015? Tencent market capitalisation hits US$200B, reached 0.5B monthly active users in Q4 2014 and US$13B in revenues.
- How do Chinese users use WeChat?
- Reading news
- Book taxis
- Do ecommerce
- How does WeChat compares to other messaging apps: LINE and Kakao Talk?
- Why is Facebook and Snapchat copying Tencent’s model for the western markets? Specifically for Whatsapp, why did Facebook not copy Wechat to attack the emerging markets? References: Messaging Apps as Platforms by Jan Dawson, Wechat vs Whatsapp, Facebook ARPU and Facebook acquisition of Whatsapp.
- Tencent has been investing in startups which utilise Wechat: Call a chicken, Kuaidi and Didi Dache(now merged).
- Why Chinese companies copy
- Main reasons: risk aversion and it is not the first but the company which gets it right.
- The case study of Fanfou, the first twitter clone and how it was shut down by the Chinese government that led to the rise of Sina Weibo.
- The story of how Alibaba took the concept of EBay, and adapted it to Taobao and won the market.
- The TIA Podcast
- What is the objective of the show?
- What are the motivations behind starting it?
- What are you covering on the show?