China’s Watching Silicon Valley. Does Silicon Valley Watch China?

Every day, I meet entrepreneurs across the US and China. I often ask them about their competitors overseas. When I’m in China, I notice that Chinese founders usually have comprehensive knowledge about their US competitors, listing off minute product features and the latest numbers on their size and traction. On the other hand, when I … Continue reading China’s Watching Silicon Valley. Does Silicon Valley Watch China?

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How to Keep Up with What’s Happening in China

This is a list of resources that I have found helpful for staying in touch with what's happening in China (and here's why I stay in touch with China), with a focus on tech. I should admit that I have been/am currently affiliated with many of the outlets mentioned below. English-language resources 996 Podcast A … Continue reading How to Keep Up with What’s Happening in China

“Father of WeChat” Lays Out 2018 Product Roadmap

By Zara Zhang and Hans Tung What is the most watched speech in the Chinese tech community? It is WeChat's founder Allen Zhang's keynote address at the WeChat Open Class PRO (WeChat's equivalent of Apple's WWDC or Google I/O) held in Guangzhou each January. Zhang is the mastermind behind WeChat, the super app with 980 million … Continue reading “Father of WeChat” Lays Out 2018 Product Roadmap

Lessons Learned from Organizing Harvard China Forum

At Harvard, I co-led the organization of Harvard China Forum, the largest student-run China conference in North America that attracts 1,200 attendees and features over 100 speakers each year. The speaker list is a who's who of prominent figures in the US-China cross-border world. It was not easy to run a large event as students … Continue reading Lessons Learned from Organizing Harvard China Forum

Has Tech Made China Less Friendly to Foreigners?

For every app that I use, there is a China equivalent that I put into a category on my phone called “China.”   This screenshot reminds me of how self-contained China’s tech ecosystem has become. Chinese people use Chinese apps. Non-Chinese people use non-Chinese apps. Those who travel back and forth, like me, usually have … Continue reading Has Tech Made China Less Friendly to Foreigners?

Why Sending WeChat Voice Messages is a Status Symbol

WeChat has a voice message function that allows you to press a button and record your message. For the uninitiated, this is just another way of sending messages that’s interchangeable with text messages. However, sending a voice message on WeChat is considered obnoxious in the Chinese professional world, and usually only tolerated if it is … Continue reading Why Sending WeChat Voice Messages is a Status Symbol

4 Philosophies Underlying the WeChat Mini-Program – Lessons from the Father of WeChat

The man who built WeChat, China’s No.1 communication tool with 877 million daily users, rarely appears in public. The 47-year-old Allen Zhang (Zhang Xiaolong) is a low-profile, chain-smoking, and hardcore programmer who prefers to let his product speak for itself. However, last December, WeChat held its own version of the WWDC in Guangzhou, where Zhang … Continue reading 4 Philosophies Underlying the WeChat Mini-Program – Lessons from the Father of WeChat

Reflection on a Summer of Getting The Information

Writing China-related tech news for The Information this summer was hands down the most rewarding professional experience I have ever had. The Information was built on the belief that people are willing to pay for truly good content, and I leave even more convinced about this thesis and the values of the organization: a relentless focus on … Continue reading Reflection on a Summer of Getting The Information