Can WeChat Challenge Facebook with its New Features?
Facebook, undoubtedly was the undisputable king of social networking sites.
But of late, Facebook is looking more like a follower rather than a leader. Keeping Facebook relevant will be more difficult due to several reasons. One of the biggest looming threats to Facebook is the proliferation of messaging apps. WhatsApp was arguably the largest known threat to Facebook. This forced Facebook to purchase it for $19 billion. However, Facebook did not get its strategy right because another rival is growing even faster than WhatsApp. We are talking about WeChat. The instant messaging app has proven to be very popular. There is enough evidence based on downloads usage metrics and engagement to show that its popularity is not a hoax.
WeChat is a product of a Chinese-based company Tencent Holding Limited. It is without doubt the most widely used mobile app in China at the moment. It is also gaining momentum outside of China. The app has broken a new record, as it now has over 500 million active users. To bolster its conquest for world domination, WeChat has hired the best football player of all time, Lionel Messi, as its brand ambassador. The app has also launched an ad campaign in South Africa and has hired several Bollywood celebrities to help market the app to Asian countries.
WeChat Unique features
Unlike other messenger apps, WeChat rolled out several killer features that keep the users coming for more. Unlike WhatsApp and other apps, WeChat lets the users chat on their computers. It is not a must that you download or install the program. You just need to access their site on a desktop browser.
Just like the Facebook feed, the WeChat Moments feeds allow you to like and comment on photos shared by your friends. If you do not want to share photos, then you can share plain text, such as a status update.
Tons of Social Features
WeChat has so many social features that are found neither on Facebook Messenger nor WhatsApp. For Example, with the “Look Around” feature, you can look for and chat with random people, people who are physically near you. This way, you can initiate a conversation with anyone anywhere in the world. Note that other WeChat users can look for you, too.
Among the excellent features that makes WeChat stand out from the crowd is the Shake feature. When you shake your phone, it shows you one person who is also shaking his/her phone at that time. You can choose to strike up a conversation with that person or shake again to get another person.
It is pretty clear that Facebook is losing the global battle to WeChat. Most people are confident that WeChat will overtake WhatsApp and Facebook very soon, because it has an unfair advantage over its rivals. For example, most of its western competitors are blocked out of the Chinese market. Also, China’s population is very big. The service is now available in English, Russian, Vietnamese, Thai, Portuguese and Indonesian. Clearly, WeChat has become a huge threat to all major social networking apps.