In 2016 in China WeChat remained the most heavily used app with nearly 80 percent of the online population employing the social media service frequently, according to a report by Bloomberg. Tencent’s second messaging service QQ took second place, while Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s online bazaar Taobao came in third. Baidu Inc.’s mobile app and Alipay, the payments service run by Alibaba-affiliate Ant Financial, rounded out the top five.

Tencent Holdings Ltd.’s messaging services were by far the most popular Chinese mobile apps in 2016, leading steady growth in the world’s largest internet and smartphone market

The rankings based on the annual report by the China Internet Network Information Center underscore how China’s “BAT” internet triumvirate — Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent — dominate the country’s internet industry, which is walled off from the likes of Google, Twitter Inc. and Facebook Inc. Internet users there climbed roughly 6 percent to 731 million — about twice the population of the U.S.

The number of people who accessed the Internet through a mobile device surged more than 12 percent to 695 million. China has become a major source of revenue for smartphone industry players from Qualcomm Inc. to Apple Inc., which now counts the greater China region as its biggest international market. But the domestic scene is again lorded over by a clutch of local players, including Oppo, Vivo and Huawei Technologies Co.

Source and first seen at: Bloomberg