Chinese Twitter-like service passes 100 million users

Chinese company Sina says it will start experimenting with ways to make money from the microblog service

One of the biggest Twitter-like microblogs in China continues to see its popularity grow, with the number of registered users accounts surpassing the 100 million mark, according to site operator, Sina.

The service, which was launched in August 2009, has risen to the forefront of China's microblogging market. Official estimates say the percentage of Chinese Internet users who use microblogging services is at 13.8 percent, but the number is only expected to grow. There are 457 million Internet users in China, according to official statistics.

"We have successfully built Sina microblog Weibo into the largest and most influential social media platform in China," said Sina CEO Charles Chao in a statement on Wednesday.

Sina's online portal is the fourth most visited site in China and offers links to news and media. But this year, Sina plans on leveraging the popularity of its microblogging service by making it a centerpiece of the company's new growth strategy.

Sina will start experimenting with ways it can generate revenue from the microblogging service likely in the second half of this year, Chao said during a quarterly earnings conference call on Wednesday. But he added, "We are not going to make monetization a priority this year."

Sina also said it will release a new version of its microblog in the second quarter of this year.

Sina's microblog still falls behind Twitter, which has about 200 million registered accounts. Twitter, however, has been blocked in China following ethnic riots that occurred in the country back in 2009. That move helped open the way for Sina's microblogging service and others in the country to take off.

Sina's microblog, however, has also become a major target for China's Internet censorship. In the last several weeks, the microblog has blocked searches for terms such as "Egypt" and "Hillary Clinton".

Experts say the move is an effort by the Chinese government to stamp out discussion related to the anti-government protests that have occurred in the Middle East. A group of anonymous activists have also called on the Chinese people to stage a "Jasmine Revolution" to protest China's government. Searches for the word "Jasmine" have also been blocked.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags business issuesInternet-based applications and servicesSinafinancial resultstwittersocial mediainternet

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Kan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Deals on Good Gear Guide

Deals on Good Gear Guide

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.


Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?