Internet-Plus Phenomenon


Under China’s Internet+ initiative, the use of handphone for payment is becoming prevelant.

They just swipe a 2-D barcode with their phones and it is done. I still mostly use the 11% cash payment method. It is nostalgic.

Because most users in China prepay money into their Alipay or *WeChat accounts, Alibaba and *Tencent are becoming two of the world’s largest banks and depository institutions. That is making them potentially the largest money lenders, wholesale investment bankers, fund managers, financial intermediaries, etc. … not to mention Big Data proprietors and developers of derivative activities. Their infrastructural platforms are cumulative. Tencent’s Weixin, for example, already has 600 million registered users! New startup businesses sprout around them like “bamboo shoots in spring”.

The world is moving very fast. The Internet+ in China will combine with Beidou+, Big Data clouds, and AI+ to form phenomena of the future, which will be here before you know it.


* Side note covered by LibertyBlitzkrieg is the fascinating rise of digital gold in China, particularly in its “virtual gifting market”. From Reuters:

“Tencent’s digital gold packets, known as “microgold”, are backed by the country’s biggest bank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC). They allow users to send funds that track the real-time value of gold to friends over the firm’s popular messaging platform WeChat…Over the recent Lunar New Year period, WeChat users sent 70,000 microgold packets worth just under 100 million yuan ($14.51 million) across the chat platform, the ICBC document said. It expects over 300,000 new gold accounts to be opened as a result of the Tencent tie-up.”

A picture illustration shows a page of the 'microgold' platform being operated on a mobile phone in Shanghai, China

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