Mobile Application Market in China

China has the largest 4G subscriber base, 1.4 times higher than in the United States. Downloads with iOS are constantly increasing, but Android users still win the largest share of the market. In fact, there are more than 500 App Store Android, with Baidu Store among the most popular. The global App Store downloads come from the Chinese App Store, and that’s why applications such as WeChat can reach more than 1 billion active users per month (the overwhelming majority of which are in China).

Mobile Application is everywhere in China

The mobile application market in China continues to grow and draws good prospects for the future. The rapid spread of mobile payment in China is favored by the scarce use of credit cards by the Chinese population. And the growing demand for home delivery is also accelerating the spread of payment applications. Alipay, the online payment service owned by the Chinese giant Alibaba, recorded the fastest growth, despite having to face the competition with WeChat Pay.

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The use of the so-called educational apps also shows a significant increase. According to the CNNIC (China Internet Network Information Center), as early as 2014, over 200 million Chinese mobile users have benefited from e-learning content. But experts say that online education in China has not yet reached half of its possibilities. With less than 30% of Chinese netizens currently using online education, an ever-growing internet population, and a rising middle class, the market is expected to continue to grow an annual 15%.

The wide selection of applications in the games category is not surprising. Most popular copies of games already known in the West are found, such as Angry Birds and Fruit Ninja. Among the most bizarre ideas that have emerged, however, we can not fail to mention Didi Da Ren translated into “Didi Hit People”. Didi Da Ren was the mobile app that best exemplifies the dark side of the now common saying “there’s an app for everything!”. This application allowed users to hire third parties to physically attack another person. Naturally, it was promptly banned but highlighted the need to establish a regulation.


In order to reach a wide diffusion and commercialization, Chinese programmers had to put their work on Chinese apps in a specific direction, ie the needs of the consumer. In order to be able to sell their product and make the Chinese consumers preferred over its competitors, the developers have included in their programs all the innovations necessary to create interesting platforms that arouse the curiosity of them, but also American or European buyers.

The strategy is therefore clear: a thorough and constant study of the needs of the end-user with the introduction of updates, changes, or innovations that can always keep the interest high with a view of simplicity and comfort. For this reason, upstream there is a large investment combined with the efficient work of Chinese computer scientists able to grasp more and more in advance the innovations to be made to their product to keep it competitive.


Founded in 2011, WeChat is a Chinese instant messaging application designed to let users communicate with each other through a simple internet connection with their smartphones. It is a platform similar to other Westerners as WhatsApp but currently reflects is also part of the category of Chinese social media because its functions have been implemented.

Also, in this case, the numbers that revolve around this Asian programming are vertiginous: it is, in fact, a Chinese application used monthly by over 1 billion users, a figure that seems destined to grow progressively thanks to the potential of this software.

The big step that has been realized inside this emblematic Chinese app is the simplification for the consumer who can, through the available functions, make payments, order food at home, book a taxi, or even a visit to his doctor.

It is therefore clear that Chinese technology in the implementation of applications is quickly exceeding the Western one and the merit of this development is to be found in an excellent marketing policy, in the ability of developers, in market research.


Make a website to promote your application

A mini-site in Chinese, a one-page site where you are free to talk about your app and all the features that make it unique, without the limitations of the app store descriptions on duty. With a well-designed website, you can also apply all Baidu SEO positioning techniques, search for keywords that have high search volumes and relatively low cost. Also, make sure your URL is in pinyin (Pinyin is the official transcription system of Chinese characters in Latin characters). The trust of the Chinese market towards PinYin and Chinese local domains is much higher than for foreign domains.

Social Media Promotion

Social Media Promotion will help increase your app/company’s brand awareness so that users can find out about your app and proactively search for it on the app stores. In China, there are two main social media platforms: WeChat and Weibo. WeChat, the WhatsApp equivalent in China, is the most common messaging platform and offers promotion opportunities through official company accounts and official banners. Weibo, the Chinese version of Twitter, is the most popular micro-blogging platform and offers opportunities to promote via official company profiles. In addition to the site, you can also think of doing lead generation, or trying to collect the contacts of all those people potentially interested in that kind of app through PPC campaigns.

Do Digital PR

Write an article to be sent to the main online publications or to industry blogs with a nice descriptive text, the app screenshots, the website link, and the one for direct download to the individual platforms. Then send personalized emails to bloggers and site owners where you think there might be an interest in apps. Write an exclusive description and story for each newspaper. The originality of the contents is a prerequisite for the success of a good digital PR campaign.

GMA can help you with your business in China. We are a Digital Agency based in Shanghai, A team of professionals in the digital marketing world.

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