Being based in Hong Kong, my tech friends and I still occasionally get asked, “So what’s the deal with FireChat?” In case you missed it, FireChat, a smartphone chat app with basic mesh support, made headlines during the recent Occupy Hong Kong protests. Protesters on the ground here turned to it in late September when rumors began to circulate that the government would shut down the internet. It never did, but plenty…
In case you’re not following consultant-turned-VC Benedict Evans‘ newsletter on mobile technology (which is excellent and highly recommended), here are the China-related gems from this week:
ICYMI, the background for this story:
- “Line” is a chat app for iOS/Android.
- It’s from Japan.
- It sells different sets of stickers, well-illustrated emoticons.
- Line is probably the first chat app to find a booming revenue model. (See TNW.)
- Other chat apps (WeChat, KakaoTalk, Kik) have caught on and have quickly implemented their own version of stickers.
In this feature on 88 Bar, we analyze Line’s sticker success and look at how China’s WeChat has caught up.
Last month, my friend Paul Orlando and I launched Startup Hug*, an experiment in cultivating an early adopter community here in Hong Kong. As part of the process, we evaluated over 130 local startup websites (the list came from Paul’s We Are HK Tech). One side product is that we categorized and annotated this list of 130.
While the data is still up to date, I wanted to share some of…