WeChat mini programs 1 year on: Key figures and trends

January 9th was WeChat mini program system's first birthday. Throughout its first year, some startups picked it up and developed their own mini programs. There is now an ecosystem of mini programs. The advantage the small, light programs have is that WeChat users don't need to download anything, they just start the mini app from within WeChat, saving time and memory space on the phone. At the…

Explainer: Why Taiwan is down but not out in the global AI race

Artificial intelligence (AI) is transforming our businesses, industries and the global economy at large. As other countries swarm to seize emerging opportunities brought by AI, Taiwan, the island situated amongst two AI front-runners—China and Japan—seems to have trouble rising above the clamor. The high-tech island is home to some of the world’s leading hardware and electronics companies,…

4 take aways from 34 new Chinese unicorns in 2017: IT Juzi report

A "unicorn" refers to those companies less than 10 years old and valued at $1 billion or more. There were 34 Chinese new unicorn companies in 2017 that match these conditions, according to a new report released by Chinese startup database IT Juzi (IT桔子). In the first half of 2017, rental economy startups gained prominence with bike rentals, power bank rentals, and got pretty silly with…

China’s going to take a bigger chunk of world’s $110b app economy in 2018: report

In the past decade, the whole world has witnessed how mobile phones and smart devices have revolutionized the way people live and think. As the iPhone, the forerunner of this evolution turned 10 in 2017, Apple's App Store and competing platform Android Market are celebrating their tenth anniversaries in 2018. The decade-long development has brought the app economy to maturity in a number of ways…

Here’s how Chinese VCs are adapting to the ever-changing startup scene

China presents a fascinating nation for tech entrepreneurs. The speed at which China’s technology grows and transforms is perhaps the most important aspect in defining what's happening in the country's startup industry: The Middle Kingdom is now the second largest arena for entrepreneurship with one startup is set up every seven minutes. To highlight the changes, virtually every very period of…

We tried Starbucks Roastery’s AR game, and this is what we think

The practice of drinking tea has a long history in China, having originated there during the Tang Dynasty. But in 2017, the practice of drinking coffee could be adding a new chapter to its history in China. For those living in Shanghai, last week's WeChat Moments were filled with Shanghai locals posting pictures and selfies in the new Starbucks Reserve Roastery, which opened its doors on…

What you missed at TechCrunch Shanghai 2017

This week saw TechCrunch land in Shanghai for yet another great event. While Shenzhen might be the hardware capital, Shanghai has a potent mix of hungry entrepreneurs from all over the world. We were delighted to welcome back for the 7th time more than 8000 people including 600 for the hackathons, 300 investors, 200 startups and companies from over 25 countries. If didn’t get a chance to make…

TechCrunch Shanghai 2017 | The Cheat Sheet (and some free tickets)

This year, TechCrunch Shanghai will be held from the 25th -28th November 2017, at Mixc Shanghai. Registration is by the office building on 1799  Wuzhong Road, near Zhitung Road Station, 3rd exit. To date, the TechCrunch summit has been held in China 7 times. Between 2013 and the first half of 2017, more than 50,000 people have attended these events. Past guests include Google's global CEO…

3 industries in China you should be paying attention to

First off, China is a fascinating and amazing place full of opportunity, innovation, and a lot of people. I mean a lot of people. Over 1.3 billion to be exact. There is so much going on at any given time, it’s hard to keep track of it all. Lots of people see China as just a manufacturing hub with lots of products being built there, but China has a lot more going on other than manufacturing.……

Alibaba spends $2.88bln to partner with Auchan in new retail collaboration

After breaking another record with RMB 168.2 billion (more than $25.3 billion) in GMV achieved in 24 hours on Singles' day, Alibaba is touting its foray into its new retail strategy as it announced today a strategic alliance with Auchan Retail S.A. and Ruentex Group that brings together their online and offline expertise to explore new retail opportunities in China’s food retail sector. The…