After nearly two years experiment, Tencent will officially release its international version of QQ messenger, named QQi. The QQi is available in English, Japanse and French. “It is intended for users worldwide to connect with their Chinese friends, clients, customers, or just about anyone anywhere in the world.” reads from its press release.
According to Marc Violo, Product Manager of QQi, he said, “One year after the release of the beta version targeting foreigners living in China, QQi currently already has over 2 million registered accounts with an average of 170,000 daily unique users in and out of China.”
Apart from QQ’s core IM functionality, QQi is trying to be more helpful for foreigners to explore anything China
related from job opportunities, news or language learning tools, to events, travel deals, directories and videos. The service has already partnered with a range of large local partners, such as the travel portal Ctrip.com or local news paper ChinaDaily.com and will in the future integrate more third party apps from local and global players. Foreigners will also benefit from Tencent patented IM technology – an innovative file transfer feature which allow you transfer large files faster and easier.
A lite version of QQi is also available for Mac and iPhone. The most interesting part for me is that, Marc also mentioned that in early 2011, they would release its first English language social networking site and integrat it into the existing information portal www.imqq.com and also seamlessly synchronized with the QQi. As Facebook is not available in China, whether Tencent’s English social networking site be accepted by foreigners for better communications could be quite interesting to find out.
Is Tencent serious about international market now or in near future? Or still it focus on anything to do with China?