/Do you know that social network giant WeChat is also an incubator for developers?

Do you know that social network giant WeChat is also an incubator for developers?

Chinese tech giant Tencent on Wednesday released its 2016 second quarter and interim results. The company is turning China’s leading social network WeChat into a giant ecosystem for enterprises.

According to the company’s data, the world-wide monthly active users (MAU) of WeChat have reached 806 million, a 34% YoY increase. WeChat is on the point of surpassing the 899 million MAUs of China’s largest instant messaging app QQ, its elder brother in the Tencent software family.

Tencent launched WeChat in January 2011. Besides the traditional instant messaging and social networking, more and more functions have been added, including online reading, online shopping and online payment. The registered users of Weixin Enterprise Accounts, which helps with internal office automation operations, have reached 20 million, according to the results.

The rapidly growing WeChat ecosystem has attracted many early stage developers and their companies.

Line graph of quarterly total investments in the WeChat companies-Geekpark.net
Quarterly total investments in the WeChat ecosystem companies. Screenshot from Geekpark.net.

According to a report by Chinese tech blog GeekPark on Thursday, third-party investments into the companies under the WeChat ecosystem peaked at RMB 3.4 billion (USD 526 million) in Q1 2016.

These companies were mainly platforms, media and consumer service providers based on WeChat, including Weidian, or mini shop, which enables individuals to open their online shop, the popular blog Luoji Siwei, and the online ticket platform Weiying Technology.

Big investments in individual companies of the WeChat ecosystem-Geekpark.net
Big investments into individual companies of the WeChat ecosystem. Screenshot from Geekpark.net.

The low subscriber acquisition cost is an important reason why many Chinese companies have chosen the WeChat ecosystem. The cost would be three times for the companies to acquire a new subscriber through an independent mobile app than through WeChat, according to the GeekPark report.

The GeekPark report expected that a paid membership scheme, live streaming, and particularly application accounts are three major directions for WeChat’s future development.

The rapid evolution of science and technology has been changing and reshaping modern people’s everyday life. A virtual world based on the Internet has brought more and more convenience to the general public.

Apparently, WeChat is one of the best representatives of the Internet and modern tech. Are you reading this on WeChat right now? If you’re in China, you probably are.

(Top photo from Hardwarezone.com)