News / Asia

Alibaba to Set Up Mobile Gaming Platform in China

FILE - A young girl plays a game on the new iPhone5c.
FILE - A young girl plays a game on the new iPhone5c.
Reuters
— E-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd said on Wednesday it would set up a mobile gaming platform in China, venturing into a fast growing sector dominated by tech rival Tencent Holdings Ltd.
 
Mobile gaming is hugely popular in China, home to the largest number of smartphone users in the world. In 2013, mobile gaming revenue accounted for 11.24 billion yuan ($1.86 billion), or 13.5 percent of the overall Chinese video gaming market, the world's third largest.
 
Liu Chunning, a former Tencent executive who now heads Alibaba's digital entertainment business, said in a statement the mobile gaming platform would be offered free to developers for the first year.
 
He did not say, however, when it would be set up and the statement gave few other details.
 
Alibaba spokeswoman Florence Shih said the platform would be launched in the near future. “We're not making mobile games, we're the platform operator,” she added.
 
A person familiar with the matter said the platform may have its own dedicated app or could be integrated into existing Alibaba apps such as e-commerce app Mobile Taobao or Laiwang, a social messaging app.
 
Alibaba's platform will have to compete with Tencent, which reported revenue of 338 million yuan ($55.86 million) from mobile gaming in the January-March quarter of last year.
 
Tencent's social messaging app WeChat, which includes games, is used by more than half of all Chinese smartphone users. The number of monthly active WeChat users grew 124 percent year-on-year in the third quarter of 2013, and figures from domestic app stores showing Tencent's mobile games are also hugely popular.
 
In October, Japanese tech and telecoms group SoftBank Corp , which has a 36.7 percent stake in Alibaba, agreed to pay $1.53 billion for a 51 percent stake in Finnish mobile game maker Supercell, valuing the small firm which generated hit games like “Clash of Clans” and “Hay Day” at $3 billion.
 
It was not immediately clear whether Alibaba would leverage that relationship to its advantage.
 
Alibaba is widely expected to launch an IPO this year. It has been conservatively estimated to be worth over $100 billion.

You May Like

EU Court Fines Poland for Hosting CIA 'Black Sites'

Ruling is first time a court has acknowledged suspects were held and tortured at the sites, under US program launched following the 9/11 terrorist attacks More

Migrant Issues Close to Home Spur Groups to Take Action

Groups placing water, food in the desert, or aiding detainees after release, have one common goal: no more deaths of migrants crossing illegally into the US More

Video At AIDS Conference, Prevention Pill Stirs Excitement

Truveda shows promise, spurring debate over access and other approaches More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debatei
X
Shelley Schlender
July 24, 2014 6:43 PM
In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Death Toll From Israel-Gaza Conflict Surpasses 700

Gaza officials say a shelling hit a compound housing a United Nations-run school in the Gaza Strip, killing more than a dozen people, during an Israeli offensive in the area. Heavy fighting between the Israeli military and Hamas militants continued on Thursday, pushing up the death toll. So far, more than 730 Palestinians and 35 Israelis have been killed in the conflict. VOA's Scott Bobb has the latest from Jerusalem.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video Israel Targets Gaza Supply Tunnels

The Israeli military has launched a ground operation in Gaza to destroy the myriad tunnels that may have been used to smuggle weapons to Hamas. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports that could mean more hardship for the people of Gaza, who obtain some of their essential supplies through these underground passages
Video

Video Researchers Target Low-Cost Avatar Technology

Scientists at the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies say 3-dimensional representations could revolutionize social media. Elizabeth Lee has more from Los Angeles.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.

AppleAndroid