Perhaps by now, most people realise what is the next wave in the internet industry. It’s mobile.
At Techweb’s IT Conference yesterday, Renren’s (NYSE:RENN - News) Vice President Huang Jing, and the deputy CEO of JingWei, Lee Youcai, shared some insights on how mobile will affect the landscape of China’s social networks, especially in the field of professional networking, where LinkedIn has been very successful. Huang says that China has the potential to replicate LinkedIn’s success, but he believes that mobile social networking is how China will answer, noting that 60 percent of Renren users are doing so from a mobile.
Almost everyone carries a mobile phone these days, and more and more people are using mobile to access the net. According to Huang, LinkedIn experienced 80 percent growth in China, and 111 percent in Indonesia where it has the biggest number of users in 2011. To date, China has approximately over one million LinkedIn users.
There are already quite a few LinkedIn clones in the market, such as Tianji, Dajie, Ushi, Zhenhedao, etc. And precisely because there are too many of such similar and perhaps mediocre products, users are confused and the market share is diluted. That’s probably why the professional social networking market has not developed in China.
Huang also feels that there is a need for a breakthrough product in the market and he commented that JingWei’s mobile name-card app is a positive indication that developers are still trying to fill this gap in the market and there are many possibilities. Weijing is basically a social media app created for business professionals. It is very similar to Youlu (YCard), another business-oriented app that collates name-card information onto your smartphone.
As the market shifts towards mobile, and there’s also a huge demand for a professional network, it won’t be long before we experience the next social media hit in China. Watch for it.