China’s two Internet giants — Sina Weibo and its rival Tencent WeChat — have rolled out new products with more commercial functions, marking the escalation of competition in the Chinese mobile Internet market.
The Twitter-like microblogging service Sina Weibo, which received 586 million U.S. dollars in investment from China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba in April, launched its Taobao-friendly version on Monday(August 5th ). It allows users to log into the online shopping platform Taobao.com via a Weibo account, check prices, credibility and popularity, make payments and share with friends.
Also on Monday, Tencent rolled out an iOS update to its popular talk-and-text app WeChat, featuring payment services, a games center and a sticker store in a bid to monetize the free app. A WeChat-customized subscriber identification module (SIM) card was also released in collaboration with telecom giant China Unicom.
“The launch of commercial-oriented products of the two Internet giants mark the heating up of competition on the mobile Internet commerce market, and it heralds reforms in the e-commerce industry”,” The new moves of the two giants not only signal escalating competition, but also have potential significant impact on other industries and people’s daily work and life”, insiders said.