Chinese Companies Are Changing the “State of the Internet”
The Internet evolves quickly and its “state” changes a lot in a year. One big shift highlighted in Kleiner Perkins venture capitalist Mary Meeker’s annual report on online trends: four of the top 10 most popular Internet properties are now held by Chinese companies—up from just one a year ago.
Only a year ago, Tencent, a leader in China’s social networking and gaming scene and maker of the wildly popular chat app WeChat, was the the 10th most popular Internet property, by a count of global monthly unique visitors. It was also China’s lone representative in the top 10, with the other nine slots held by U.S. companies.
Data from this year is shown on the chart below. Not only has Tencent risen two spots, it is also now accompanied in the top 10 by three Chinese peers. Sohu and Baidu are search engines that offer a variety of other services. Alibaba, the e-commerce giant planning an enormous U.S. IPO, is now the most popular Chinese-owned Internet property in the world. At the rate the Internet’s popularity is growing in China, especially in the mobile arena, it would not be a surprise if next year’s list featured even more Chinese companies (see “Alibaba’s Big Rivals May Have a Mobile Edge”).
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