WeChat Founder Announces Changes & the Future of WeChat

ShekouDaily   |   January 10, 2020

Yesterday, Zhang Xiaolong, the founder of Wechat, addressed the 2020 Open Class PRO, WeChat’s annual flagship conference for business partners and developers, and gave a preview of some changes we can expect to see coming to WeChat.

In the 12 minute 12 second video, Zhang Xiaolong stated that although WeChat previously limited one person to a maximum of 5,000 friends, and since nearly one million people are now close to 5,000 friends, WeChat has decided to increase that limit… but there’s a catch.

With the latest update to WeChat that was just released, users can now continue to add contacts after they’ve reached 5,000, but they will be prompted to set them to the new “chat only” privacy setting; which prevents them from seeing your WeChat Moments, Time Capsules, WeRun data, etc.

If you want new friends to be able to see those, you’ll need to change the “privacy” settings of some of your previous friends to “chat only” to make room for your new friends to see them.

Additionally, Zhang Xiaolong mentioned that WeChat will work to strengthen the ability for users to create short content, and that there will be some new innovations in the red envelopes feature.

Mobile Access to Subscription Account Content Creation?

“Looking back, we had two small mistakes that year,” Zhang Xialong said. “One was the public platform. For a long time there was only the pc web version, which limited the scope of content creators.”

New Short Content Direction?

Zhang added that “the original idea of the public platform was to replace text messaging as a mass communication tool… and get rid of spam text messages. Mass content is not the point, it should be about a variety of content, such as text, pictures, videos, etc. But we accidentally made the article the carrier of content, so that other forms of short content were not presented, which made us fall short of short content. That’s what I meant when I said before that the public account itself was not designed for media. We value content that everyone can create. The reason we have Moments to post photos and videos is because I knew at the time that it was not easy for one billion people to post text, but sending photos is something everyone can do.”

Red Envelope Innovations

“The Spring Festival is coming. We have some new creations on the red envelope, which may also attract you to give play to your creativity.”

2019 Statistics

During the conference, some interesting 2019 user statistics were shared. Here are a few that caught our attention:

  • The number of monthly active accounts on WeChat exceeded 1.1 billion.
  • Peak use time is concentrated before lunch and after work.
  • Users tend to spend the time before and after lunch on shopping, and food.
  • After 8pm, users tend to spend time on night-life content and games.
  • Users tend to take a break and see what’s been going on in the world at around 9 p.m.
  • The average number of steps per day on WeRun is 6,932 steps.
  • The number of users with WeRun steps less than 100 on the weekends reached 12 million!

2018 v 2019 – Most Popular Emojis

In 2018, the most popular emojis were as follows:

  • For those born in the “00s”: 

  • For those born in the “90s”: 

  • For those born in “80s”: 

  • For those born in “70s”: 

  • For those 55 and older: 

In 2019, the most popular emojis were: