As with WeChat, Tencent’s QQ will integrate mini-programs

Mini-programs are big business.

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QQ, an instant messaging platform developed by Tencent, once dominated China’s social cyberspace before the advent of WeChat. To keep up with the times, QQ will allow companies to add mini-programs to the platform beginning in June, tech news website Techweb reported on Wednesday, citing Tencent product director and QQ product team leader Zhang Hao.

When contacted by KrASIA on Wednesday, Tencent confirmed the Techweb report.

Mini-programs have become an essential feature for Chinese mobile app users. QQ is the seventh app in China to incorporate them, following WeChat, Alipay, Taobao, Baidu’s main app, as well as ByteDance’s news aggregator Jinri Toutiao and short video app Douyin. It also indicates that Tencent has found another way to monetize its massive QQ user base.

Tencent said in its first quarter financial report that QQ’s monthly active users numbered at 823 million, more than 700 million of whom logged onto the instant messaging tool using their smart devices.

WeChat was the first app in China to introduce mini-programs, which are sub-applications within an app enabling companies to provide their services. For instance, without exiting WeChat, a user can use Mobike’s mini-program to locate a bicycle and unlock it.

Tencent attributed its 34% year-on-year increase in “social and other advertising revenues” in the first quarter to Moments, which offers the functionality of social networks; mini-programs; and QQ KanDian, an entertainment-focused content platform.

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