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In China, Facebook Tests the Waters With a Stealth App
The country boasts an audience of more than 700 million internet users who buy $750 billion of stuff online a year, but they are served by local tech companies
that have developed their own way of doing business that can seem exotic to Silicon Valley.
Now Colorful Balloons gives the Silicon Valley company a way to see how Chinese users digitally
share information with their friends or interact with their favorite social media platforms.
The app, which is designed to collate photos from a smartphone’s photo albums and then share them, does so in China with the use of a QR code, a sort of bar code
that is widely used by WeChat and other apps in the country
To change that, Mark Zuckerberg has made a big point of meeting with Chinese politicians, reading stodgy
Communist Party propaganda, studying Mandarin and — perhaps more daunting — speaking it in public.
It is registered to an address in eastern Beijing, yet the room number listed in company registration
documents could not be found amid a series of shabby, small offices on the building’s fourth floor.
The app was released in China by a company called Youge Internet Technology, according to a post in Apple’s app store.
Colorful Balloons instead links users through China’s biggest social network, WeChat.