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February 18, 2011

Chinese Homegrown Twitter "Sina Weibo" Outguns Twitter

Ye Fangzhao, a 25-year-old freelance brochure editor for auto companies, abandoned his Twitter account a year ago to start using Sina Weibo, a Chinese equivalent. Now he's on the micro-blogging service 10 hours a day to connect with motoring experts and keep up with trends.

"I don't need to go to bookstores or buy magazines," says Ye, who lives in Xiamen, Fujian province. "It saves me time and money."


China's leading site for micro-blogging, the Twitter-inspired  microblogging website Sina Weibo"  focused on extremely short messages of 140 characters. The site is responsible for 87 percent of the time spent on micro-blogging services in China. 

 
 After Twitter was blocked  in the build upto  the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests in June The ensuing social media vacuum left an opening for Sina Weibo, which appeared in August of that year. Sina Weibo's Rivals include Chinese Homegrown  companies like Tencent, Sohu, and NetEase.Sina started its micro-blogging service at least four months before its three main rival portals: Tencent Holdings Ltd, Sohu.com Inc and Netease.com Inc's163.

Sina Weibo is a Chinese microblogging site, similar to Twitter, launched by Sina corporation, China's biggest web portal, in August 2009.According to Sina, the microblog site remains in beta, though it has more than 80 million users and millions of posts per day, and is adding 10 million new users per month. The company also said it now has more than 60,000 verified accounts, consisting of celebritiesMore  than 5,000 companies and 2,700 media organizations in China are currently using Weibo. TThe site is currently available in both simplified and traditional Chinese characters.

Weibo is a division of Sina Corp. (SINA), which operates China's third-most-visited website. Sina's shares, traded in the U.S. on the Nasdaq exchange, have almost tripled in price since Weibo's launch, and the company has a $5.7 billion market capitalization

 

More than 40% of Sina Weibo users access the service through the network of China’s largest mobile carrier, China Mobile, and that he expects this percentage to grow. The company is working with handset vendors and mobile platforms to promote related mobile applications.
Sina, which recently announced a partnership with a joint-venture company of Microsoft, also announced at the conference that Sina Weibo has so far attracted 50 million users who collectively post 25 million comments per day. The company says an average of 10 million new users have signed up for the service per month since August of this year. 
(source: Businessweek.com )