Three Apps to Get Social in China

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Social interactions and how people meet around the world have rapidly changed since the advent of social media. China is not any different, with people spending a minimum of three to four hours a day on their phones. While it is frustrating for someone to be on their phone during face to face interactions, ever wonder who they are talking to or what apps are so interesting?

WeChat is obviously the biggest social app in China, with an estimated 1 billion monthly users, according to a Business Insider report. However, that is not the only app people use to communicate.

We are exploring three common Chinese apps that offer individual functions for meeting friends, professional development and dating.

Meet Friends

You might recognize QQ by the fun and adorable penguin mascot. It was boasted as the dominate social app in China until latecomer, WeChat, surpassed it in 2017.

The app, favored by a younger crowd, is very similar to WeChat since both of them were developed by tech company Tencent. Because of its young user base, QQ offers more functions for gaming, entertainment and making friends.

Launched in 1999, it has since rapidly developed new software and has now stretched its online community to 80 countries around the world with QQ International in English (2009). It also offers a built-in chat translator so users can overcome linguistic and cultural barriers easily.

QQ has become very popular in its file-sharing functions, providing faster and more efficient ways to share larger files and works similar to Google Docs. That’s why QQ remains one of the most important communication tools.

Keep it Professional

Ding Ding was launched by Alibaba in 2014, and its popularity as an office solution is still on the rise.

The app goes beyond messaging and provides multiple functions such as a calendar for scheduling tasks and meetings, tools for making video conference calls and offers an attendance system for employees to clock in and out of work. More importantly, many small and medium size companies use Ding Ding to significantly improve their communication. Ding Ding allows users to create groups and show the organizational structure of the company, so users can contact their colleagues directly.

Ding Ding makes it much easier for companies to process approvals electronically, either with a request for leave, business trips or reimbursements. GPS-activated, Ding Ding can automatically link your approvals for business trips and leave with your attendance records and locations.

It is like having a secretary at your fingertips, if only it could make coffee.

For the Singles

Although Momo and Tantan are better known apps on the dating scene, and are the Chinese equivalent to Tinder, Jimu stands out for some of its unique functions when you need a hot date.

When setting up your profile, you can put different tags on your Jimu along with other basic information such as your name, location, age and interests. Your age and location are the main functions that match you with others, and you can swipe left or right depending on if you like the person or not. If you like each other, then you can initiate a conversation; otherwise, swipe on.

Jimu also allows users to write public comments that float across the profile of other users. Once matched, the messaging function lets users send text, voice messages, photos or just a random line generated by the app. You can see a daily record of people who liked you on Jimu, and it will redirect you to their pages.