Tencent’s WeChat, a Chinese mobile text and voice messaging application, is taking off outside of China – the software now boasts more than 50 million registered overseas users, according to Tech in Asia. Meanwhile, its overall user base has been growing exponentially as well, topping 400 million users worldwide.
Tencent is the originator of China’s most popular instant messaging program, QQ, and introduced the now ubiquitous WeChat app in 2011. Since then, WeChat has rapidly gained popularity both within China and abroad. In fact, the software, free to use, has become so popular that China’s telecommunication companies tried to chastise Tencent for taking away their text messaging revenue, Tech in Asia reported.
With an eye on the international market, WeChat has been made available in English, Indonesian, Spanish, Portuguese, Thai, Vietnamese and Russian. The software has been especially successful in Mexico, Singapore, India, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. On the back of this strong growth, Tencent posted impressive revenues in the first quarter of 2013 – $2.161 billion, an 11.5 percent increase from Q4 2012, according to Shanghaiist. The company is now considering adding gaming services, which was a big part of Tencent’s success with QQ’s auxillary products, to the WeChat app.
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