Chinese portal Sohu reports loss of US$45 mil., revenue up by 18 percent

BEIJING– Inc., operator of a popular Chinese Internet portal, says it lost US$45 million in the latest quarter while revenue rose 18 percent to US$400 million. Sohu said Monday the loss for the three months ended June 30 compared with a US$69 million loss in the previous quarter and an operating profit of US$64 million in the same period of 2013.

KakaoTalk now has 20 million monthly active users on its social games

KakaoTalk, the startup messaging app with over 140 million registered users, beat the big boys like WeChat and Line to the punch with its social gaming platform, which launched two years ago. Today KakaoTalk revealed how that money-making gaming system is working out. Now KakaoTalk has 20 million monthly active users on its chat app-connected social games.

Line launches ‘hidden chat’ to do what Facebook couldn’t – kill Snapchat

Line users who obsessively update the app noticed a new treat today – a Snapchat-like function called hidden chat. Hidden chat can be chosen from the same drop down menu as video chat or phone call. Currently only available for one-on-one chats, the feature allows users to engage in a private conversation that will be deleted. Each message will be visible for up to one minute and the exact time is adjustable by the user. Text, stickers, and photos are all covered. Video files, however, cannot be sent via hidden chat.

Alibaba has a second attempt at making a social network

Ecommerce titan Alibaba has a new social network. It’s a sort of Instagram that’s based around tagging brand names that appear in your photos. Rather than making it a standalone app, Alibaba’s newest effort, called Fun, is built into its Tmall shopping app and is rolling out to users in an update for iOS and Android. Tmall is an online marketplace for large vendors and major brands.

LinkedIn: Malaysians lead region in wanting BFFs at work

Malaysian professionals value workplace relationships more than any other Asian country, says professional network LinkedIn’s Relationships @Work recent study. Over half (58%) of Malaysian professionals, especially those from Generation Y, believe friendships with colleagues make them happier at work.  Three out of five Gen-Yers report that socialising in-person with co-workers makes their working environment better, compared to only two out of five baby boomers.

Messaging app firm Line Corp filed for US IPO: report

SEOUL: Line Corp, a Japan-based social messaging service firm, has filed for an initial public offering in the United States, Bloomberg News reported on Friday, citing unidentified sources. Line’s parent company, South Korea’s Naver Corp, said on Wednesday that Line had filed for an initial public offering in Tokyo. Banking sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Wednesday that the listing will ultimately be either a dual US-Japan listing or a listing only in the United States.

India is a Promising Market for Facebook, Says Sandberg

BANGALORE: The chief operating officer of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, said, “No other country has the potential that India has”, also added that in India there are more than 100 million users and 1.2 billion users worldwide and she wants to ensure that access to Internet in India is faster, better and cheaper, reports Business Insider. “India is Facebook’s second largest market, fastest growing market, and fastest growing Internet connectivity in APAC. It is of high priority for us,” Sandberg said.

India now has 106 million active social media users as mobile web rises (INFOGRAPHIC)

India now has 243.2 million internet users and 106 million active social media users, according to the latest mid-year figures for 2014. The rate of internet penetration among India’s population is now 19 percent. All those numbers are up strongly from the end of 2012, when India had 137 million web users, 60 million active on social media, and an 11 percent web penetration rate.

Japanese chat app Line appears to be blocked in mainland China

Have Chinese authorities added Japanese chat app Line to its internet blacklist? [See bottom for update from] Today our colleagues in mainland China fired up Line, where Tech in Asia houses its non-urgent communications, only to find that messages they sent were marked with an exclamation point, indicating some sort of technical error. That might not mark an immediate cause for concern. Line goes down frequently, not unlike any other social network, and even suffered a major outage two days ago.

Gigya Expands Presence in Asia-Pacific and Latin American Markets in Response to Booming Global Demand

MOUNTAIN VIEW — Gigya, the Connected Consumer Management Suite, today announced its overseas growth in Australia, Asia and Latin America through the expansion of sales teams based out of Melbourne, Singapore, as well as a dedicated headquarters team focused on México, Brazil and South America. The company’s global expansion follows a year of torrid growth for the company, which processed more than 800 million logins in 2013 through its Registration-as-a-Service and Social Login products. Currently powering logins and registration in over 46 different countries, Gigya already has a large international footprint with customers such as Tommy Hilfiger, The Independent, The Globe and Mail, KLM, L’Occitane, Next Media, Japan Airlines and Canon.

Facebook reaches 69M users in Indonesia, one of its largest markets

Facebook just saw its active user base in Indonesia rise to 69 million, according to a statement from Facebook’s Indonesia head, Anand Tilak. Two quarters back, the company reported 65 million active monthly users in the country pointing to a 6-percent increase. Indonesia is actually one of Facebook’s largest markets, despite the fact that Internet access isn’t always available and just 23-percent of the Southeast Asian country’s 240 million people have smartphones, according to Nielsen.


The Singapore Government has awarded a S$26.5 million (US$21 million) contract to Accenture to develop a national case management and information system that will coordinate the delivery of social services to individuals and families in need. Implementation of the system, called the Social Service Net (SSNet), will start in the third quarter of 2015, the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) and Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore announced.

Japanese news app Gunosy lands second $12M investment from KDDI in just 4 months

KDDI, Japan’s third largest carrier by subscriber base behind Docomo and SoftBank, is betting on the success of news curation app Gunosy. The telco announced a 1.2 billion yen (US$11.8 million) funding round today – after already providing US$12 million in March to fund a Gunosy television advertisement campaign. According to The Bridge, Jafco and B Dash Ventures joined KDDI for the latest investment.


Australia’s armed forces build their own Facebook

The Australian Defence Force is readying the launch of a new human resources portal akin to a social network, for use by both current staff and alumni of the country’s armed forces. ForceNet is an internal social network through which Defence workers can connect with colleagues, send direct messages, post content, and create events and social groups.,australias-armed-forces-build-their-own-facebook.aspx

Social Media Important Tools For Governance: President

NEW DELHI: President Pranab Mukherjee said the government will work for digitization of its records, establish Wi-Fi zones in critical public areas and use social media as a tool for participative governance. “My government will work for the digitization of government records. Digitization of government records will be done for improving accessibility. E-governance brings empowerment, equity and efficiency,” said Mukherjee while addressing the joint session of parliament.

35 million active users strong, China’s Pinterest look-alike raises US$200 million funding

China’s biggest Pinterest look-alike Mogujie (literally translated as “Mushroom Street”) is now rocking more than 35 million monthly active users and has just raised a US$200 million round of funding, according to QQ Tech. Goldman Sachs’ Magnolia Fund led the investment followed by Zhixin Capital, Qiming Ventures, IDG, and Banyan Fund. Mogujie stated it will use the money to enhance customer experience, develop its team, and create an open-source community to support its ecosystem.

Thailand social media stats: 28 million on Facebook, 4.5 million on Twitter, 1.7 million on Instagram

Back in March, Thailand had roughly 24 million Facebook users and 1.5 million Instagram users. Twitter saw 35 percent user growth and 45 percent more use per user in 2013 compared to 2012 in Thailand. The number has grown significantly since then. Earlier this week at the Thailand Zocial Awards in Bangkok, some interesting numbers were presented. Zocial Inc, the company behind ZocialRank, which monitors social media trends in the country, hosted the event.

After Thailand’s coup, rulers want to meet with Facebook, Google, Line, to discuss censoring individual users

It’s been a little over a week since the military took over Thailand. Under the pretext of maintaining peace in the country (after more than half a year of intense political instability), the junta has not only censored old media but also found ways to filter online content. That could soon extend deeper into censorship of social media. According to Post Today, Thailand’s IT ministry plans to send a government representative to Singapore to talk to Facebook and Google, and another team to Japan to talk to NHN, the company behind the popular messaging app Line.

Japan’s family-centric social network nets $500,000 in funding led by Venture United

Compath Me, the startup behind Kiddy, a photo diary social network targeted at families, has completed a US$500,000 financing round led by Venture United. The company has previously received investments from DG Incubation, Archetype, and With more money in the bank, co-founder Hiromichi Ando tells us that the funds will be used to improve its app and to accelerate overseas expansion.

Line Corp takes on the world

TOKYO: In the three years since it launched its free messaging app, Japan-based Line has attracted more than 430 million users in 230 countries. As the user-base expands, revenue is also skyrocketing. In the first quarter of 2014, revenue was 223 per cent higher than a year earlier at US$144 million. In an interview with Channel NewsAsia correspondent Mike Firn, the chief operating officer of Line Corp, Takeshi Idezawa, talked about how Line plans to keep on growing and attracting more users.