China’s short video market is expected to hit around $ 14.08 billion by 2020. And now Chinese firms going global. Today YY, Kuaishou and Tik Tok dominate MENA’s arena
Anyone interested in the global live streaming industry must study the Asian markets, China in particular. According to statistics, China’s short video market is expected to hit around $ 14.08 billion by 2020. Until now, Western apps had always been the most downloaded but a sign of changes came last year when four of the top ten most downloaded apps were Chinese and today China is exporting this trend with PRC based firms becoming famous worldwide.
Especially in MENA area where Chinese video streaming app already leading the market. As we know, Chinese digital and tech companies are adapting, able to adjust themselves to new market dynamics. This is the main secret behind country’s business philosophy: facing challenges and developing several strategies to take advantage of opportunities. Three top players “Made in China” dominate the arena.
1. YY: The App That Started “Live Streaming” Long March
One of China’s earliest live streaming platforms, essentially paved the way for China’s streaming boom launching its core product YY Client, a PC-based free software that allows users to create individual channels for online live group activities back in July 2008. To increase the accessibility and usage of YY Client, they introduced a mobile application, Mobile YY, in September 2010 and a browser-based version of their services in October 2012. Both of these were aimed at viewers, streamers still needed to use the PC software in order to actually stream.
Then, to accelerate monetization, a year later in October 2013 they introduced virtual item purchase functions on Mobile YY. When the mobile live streaming trend enveloped China 2015, YY upgraded their app to offer mobile streaming capability in order to keep up with the hundreds of new mobile-only competitors.
YY’s reported net income, which includes its recent acquisition of the short and streaming video company Bigo (also very popular in Middle East) more than tripled to 3.12 billion RMB ($460 million). On an adjusted basis, which excludes that acquisition and other one-time benefits, its net income dipped 10% to 654 million RMB ($96 million), or $1.38 per ADS, but still beat expectations by $0.20.
2. Kuaishou: From Beijing to Dubai. Everybody is Crazy For Kwai
Launched in 2011 by Kuaishou Technology, Kuaishou is one of the world’s leading short video social platforms, boasting more than 200 million daily active users. On a mission to increase every individual’s happiness through big data and AI technology, Kuaishou was created based on the belief that everyone’s lives are worth chronicling.
Through the sharing of short videos, photos and livestreams, Kuaishou Technology’s ‘equal opportunity’ algorithms and ethical corporate values breathes to life a technology platform that for the first time has been designed to shine a limelight on the often overlooked, yet diverse and down-to-earth communities of people in China. By highlighting a side of China that’s not often seen, Kuaishou empowers the commoners of China to virtually experience the world by enabling them to engage with fans from all walks of life around the globe, while inviting the world into their homes.
Since its launch, Kuaishou has grown to become China’s largest life sharing platform with 15 million pieces of user generated content created everyday and 350 million daily likes. Supported by an archive of 10 billion original short videos, Kuaishou’s journey to document humankind and empower citizens worldwide to discover their inner happiness is just beginning.
While Kuaishou is Kuaishou Technology’s a short video platform for the Chinese market, the international version of its app, Kwai, parallels Kuaishou with similar features, but offers localized functions tailored to users from outside of China.
3. How Tik Tok Became Worldwide Most Downloaded app?
Quickly rising at the top of social network charts is the Chinese Douyin 抖音, aka TikTok. The music video app from the PRC is the most downloaded in the world with an estimated 104 million downloads. The Chinese startup, formerly called A.me, was launched in September 2016 by Zhang Yiming – the founder of China’s news platform Toutiao – through his company ByteDance.
Later that year, the app changed the name into Douyin and started its race to become the leading short video platform in the world. Aiming to reach the American teenage market, ByteDance then spent $ 1 billion to purchase the Santa Monica/Shanghai-based Musical.ly, which it merged into TikTok last August.
TikTok’s success lies in its user-friendliness and versatility. The user can search for videos with keywords or let the algorithm choose the ones that best suit the tastes. While the user swaps from one video to another, hearts and comments are what make this app a real social network. Like many other social networks, Douyin allows users to upload their own 15-seconds video by direct recording, broadcasting or previously recorded video but it adds a little fun thanks to its wide gallery of funny effects and the possibility to synchronize them on a musical base.
The interface is also appealing, while competitors used to ask to click on videos, the Chinese app implemented the “swipe” interface, the action that has lead to success other big social networks. Douyin has now established a strong international presence, especially in the United States and Japan where many videos reached millions of views and thousands of comments.
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