Tue

24

Sep

2013

Daily Digital Pulse In China: Sina, Alibaba & WeChat Vending Machines

China Digital

Sina Jumps On The Top Box Bandwagon

Sina recently announced two partnerships, one with home electronics manufacturer Hisense and the other with government-backed Coship. These collaborations contribute to enhance their users experience online experience. In the past weeks, we have seen other players such as Baidu, Tencent, Xiaomi and Alibaba announcing their intentions on also creating a set-top box, Sina’s move in this direction is thus not surprising. Sina’s top box like others will have its own smart TV OS built on Android. The name of this box will be called Feikan and is manufactured by their other partner Coship. There have been rumors spreading about Sina working with manufacturer Hisense to make “Weibo account controlled home appliances.”Sina announced that they will collaborate with Ayla Networks to create a wifi-weather station. It will be interesting to see how many Smart products will be integrated in home appliances. The trend is set now let’s see who comes out on top.

Source: Tech In Asia

China Digital

Vending Machines for WeChat Users

WeChat and Ubox have been experimenting with their own vending machines, allowing customer to pay completely within the chat app in order to quench their thirsts. Approximately 300 of the vending machines have popped up in subway stations all over Beijing. Consumers who pay using WeChat get discounts on their drinks – getting them for RMB 1, when they usually cost around RMB 3-5. Even with WeChat’s high volume of users, however, it will probably prove difficult to get people to make mobile payments.

Source: Tech In Asia

China Digital

Alibaba’s Late Entry Into the Social Messaging Ring

Alibaba has recently implemented their 14 month project of Laiwang( social messaging app). It seems as though when it comes to social messaging WeChat claims all the marbles, Alibaba’s attempt to battle Tencent’s monetizing precious will be difficult. Alibaba CEO Johnathan Lu stated that “This product will help connect different aspects of people’s social life, lifestyle and consumer habits [and will] create new wireless application scenarios.” Laiwang is virtually the same as WeChat in terms of functionality, However, Laiwang has a browser-based option, and lets users share things with all buddies in a Path-like social network that complements the messaging experience. If you are a prospective China Telecom user, you will be seeing the preinstalled Laiwang on your new smartphone. This might help boost the amount of users; however the key lies in Alibaba’s capability of incorporating Alibaba’s popular e-shopping sites, Tmall and Taobao, either for e-store merchants or for regular users to engage in mobile commerce. Of course this would have been better if the app was released earlier. Indeed WeChat has gained another challenger, but fortunately this one arrived late to the fight.

Source: Tech In Asia


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