To the world, it's the company behind Tiktok. But in China, the company is often called by the name of Bytedance's biggest app: Toutiao—short for Jinri Toutiao, the flagship newsfeed app.

Jinri Toutiao, which means “Today’s Headlines,” uses artificial intelligence to track readers’ habits and preferences, and push them stories from more than 1.1 million publishers. The AI-powered recommendation system is by no means perfect; its model prioritizes sensationalism and rapid-fire publication, leading to clickbait articles and plagiarism.

But the approach has proven successful: The app has become the most popular newsfeed app in China, with more than 258 million monthly active users (MAU) as of June.

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Wei Sheng

Wei Sheng is a Beijing-based reporter covering hardware, smartphone, and telecommunications, along with regulations and policies related to the China tech scene. He writes a monthly newsletter tracking...

Tony Xu

Tony Xu is Shanghai-based tech reporter. Connect with him via e-mail: tony.xu@technode.com