Chinese Instant Messaging (IM) Market Undergoing Big Shakeup
From eCommerceTimes: MSN Poses Threat to Chinese IM Operators
"The Chinese instant messaging (IM) market is currently undergoing a big shakeup, as American-based MSN expands further into an already-crowded field.
Software giant Microsoft on May 26 launched MSN China, a Chinese-language Web portal run through Shanghai MSN Network Communications, a joint venture with Shanghai Alliance Investment. Hotmail and Messenger services, which have already been run in China, will be the focus and core contents of the Chinese-language portal."
"While Microsoft debuted the MSN China, Tencent, the bellwether in the Chinese domestic IM market, also accelerated its expansions into the portal market. To present the best comprehensive portal, the company has started to recruit various Web content producing talents in Beijing."
"The total revenue in the Chinese IM market will exceed $241.2 million (CNY 2 billion) in 2005, according to the forecast of CCW Research. If the corporate market can be started smoothly, the size will reach $1.2 billion (CNY 10 billion) in 2008."
"At present, Tencent is the only IM software operator in China starting to diversify its product mix. The other small IM software providers, such as NetEase POPO, Sina UC and IMU, are still busy with increasing their user groups."