The way of communication and the content that people in China see, has changed significantly in the last years. In terms of communication messaging remains the dominant mobile activity. But in terms of what people in China is watching, users have spent three times more time seeing short videos in the last year. As well these new apps have changed the way that digital marketing in China is done.
There are more than 600 million users in China who are actively using apps for short videos. Being the top four apps Kuaishou, Douyin (Tik Tok), Huoshan and Xigua. Kuaishou was launched in 2011 and has more than 50% of the market share. Users are from 2nd to 4th tier cities and have more than 10 million users outside of China. The second app Douyin was launched in September 2017 and it was the most downloaded iOS app, with more than 45 million downloads, in the first quarter of 2018 globally.
In terms of online video apps there are basically three big players in China: Tencent Video, iQiyi and Youku. Tencent Video was launched in 2011 and has more than 63 million paying subscribers. iQiyi was launched in 2010 by Baidu and has more than 60 million paying subscribers. Youku was launched in 2006 and then was bought by Alibaba in 2015 and merged with Tudou. They maintain different brands as their contents are different. Tudou is focused on user-generated content and Youku streams hit shows and dramas.
When we talk about news content apps there are two big leaders: Tencent News and Toutiao. Tencent News has the largest user base with 259 million users. Toutiao has the longest user time spent with 73 minutes.
It is important to recall that all content or video used in China needs to comply with the regulations and restrictions stated by the Chinese government. If the content or video doesn’t comply with these regulations, it will be removed by the government.