• Understanding China’s Mobile App System

    When people speak of the application ecosystem in China, they emphasize greatly on gaming apps and major names such as WeChat. What app entrepreneurs don’t get to know is whether there is any scope for growth of non-gaming apps, especially those from foreign developers. For app makers who are looking to make their presence felt in the Chinese application market, there is no concrete information available on the pain points they should be expecting.

    China Mobile App Ecosystem

    China: A Market That Can Be Explored Deeper
    There are a few things app developers encounter on a day to day basis while improving their reach in China’s dynamic mobile ecosystem. China has a humongous mobile user base of about 500 million. However, a majority of the people use low end Android devices. Although there has been a significant boost in the number of people upgrading to entry level Android smartphones from feature phones, the figures are pretty low compared to their American counterparts. This means that app developers should optimize their applications to run well on low end smartphones too.

    The Chinese App Market
    China has several hundred application stores but only a handful of those are really household names. Anzhi, Gfan, AppChina, Hiapk, Wandoujia, Liqucn, eoemarket, QQ, and 91Market are the most famous independent app stores. On the other hand, smartphone handset manufacturers also have their app stored bundled into their devices. That’s not all China’s major telecom providers ChinaMobile and ChinaUnicom have their application stores too. When you are looking to promote an app, it is essential to publish it in these stores. As an app entrepreneur, your primary goal should be to make the app visible to more users.

    This is possible only when you target popular app stores. You will have to manage the quality assessment and certification process for each app store before having it published. Revenue sharing also varies with different application stores. For instance, QQ takes up to 70 percent of the app’s revenue while ChinaUnicom takes 30 percent. Furthermore, each application store has its own set of policies, procedures and taxing issues. This is exactly why most foreign app developers tie up with a third party company that already has a strong presence in the local Chinese market.

    There is good scope for other app niches in the Chinese market. In the recent past, educational and utility applications have gained popularity among the Chinese audience. In addition, cross-platform instant messaging apps are also very popular. If you are looking to do some profitable business through apps in China exploring these domains is viable. It is also advised that app developers have cloud servers located in China itself. The great firewall might cause stability and connectivity issues in case you cloud servers are located outside China.


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