TikTok’s rivals in India struggle to cash in on its ban
For years, India has served as the largest open battleground for Silicon Valley and Chinese firms searching for their next billion users.
With more than 400 million WhatsApp users, India is already the largest market for the Facebook-owned service. The social juggernaut’s big blue app also reaches more than 300 million users in the country.
Google is estimated to reach just as many users in India, with YouTube closely rivaling WhatsApp for the most popular smartphone app in the country.
Several major giants from China, like Alibaba and Tencent (which a decade ago shut doors for most foreign firms), also count India as their largest overseas market. At its peak, Alibaba’s UC Web gave Google’s Chrome a run for its money. And then there is TikTok, which also identified India as its biggest market outside of China.
Though the aggressive arrival of foreign firms in India helped accelerate the growth of the local ecosystem, their capital and expertise also created a level of competition that made it too challenging for most Indian firms to claim a slice of their home market.
New Delhi’s ban on 59 Chinese apps on June 30 on the basis of cybersecurity concerns has changed a lot of this.
Indian apps that rarely made an appearance in the top 20 have now flooded the charts. But are these skyrocketing download figures translating to sustaining users?
An industry executive leaked the download, monthly active users, weekly active users and daily active users figures from one of the top mobile insight firms. In this Extra Crunch report, we take a look at the changes New Delhi’s ban has enacted on the world’s second largest smartphone market.
Scores of startups in India, including news aggregator DailyHunt, on-demand video streamer MX Player and advertising giant InMobi Group, have launched their short-video format apps in recent months.