UC reportedly acquired 100% stake in iOS jailbreaking service PP Assistant in a bid to strengthen its presence in iOS platform (report in Chinese).

PP Assistant, which started as an iOS jailbreaking service, supports the download, installation and management of software, game, and ringtone for iOS-powered devices, including iPhone, iPad, and iTouch.

PP Assistant’s iOS users reached 40 million with average daily app download of more than 8 million and monthly game revenue nearing 40 million yuan. In addition to jailbreak users, PP Assistant also tried to attract genuine as well as Android users by releasing PP Assistant Genuine and PP Assistant Android version. The latter has attracted more than 450,000 apps by September, just one month after its launch in August.

As a third-party browser which records over 100 million monthly active users on Android platform, UC did not have distribution channels in real sense for iOS platform, which has its own browser Safari.

Although UC declined to comment on the news, the company’s board chairman Yu Yongfu previously said that the firm planned to construct an ecosystem by investing in and acquiring domestic companies.

PP Assistant’s management once disclosed that although the founding team prefers to develop independently, investors tend to sell the company. Yaowan, a leading investor of PP Assistant, was fully acquired by Datang Telecom for around 1.7 billion yuan last June.

App distributors were favored by Internet giants this year. Baidu acquired 91 for $1.85 billion earlier this year and Wandoujia reportedly has secured $100 million from Softbank recently.

Emma Lee

Emma Lee (Li Xin) was TechNode's e-commerce and new retail reporter until June 2022, when she moved to Sixth Tone to cover technology and consumption. Get in touch with her via lixin@sixthtone.com or Twitter.

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