What is WeChat?


Published 17/02/2021 · 3 min read

The question is no longer just what WeChat is, but how you can apply it to your business strategy. This payment method offers innovative experiences to users and eCommerce because it is a modern system that keeps pace with the needs of society. Its philosophy is to connect users, so it offers the possibility of creating official accounts for companies, from which to develop effective marketing actions for followers. 

We will not tell you more about it because we want you to join us in this post to find out!


What is WeChat and what is it for?

In a nutshell, it is a Chinese mobile social media app software that enables instant messaging and payment services, among other things. It is a method developed by the Chinese multinational Tencent. In other words, WeChat is a Chinese application that offers a multitude of services to users and online stores, including online payments, instant messaging services, social networks and free calls.

Over the years, the app has been dubbed an 'all-purpose super app' due to the number of features it offers. Its popularity among the Chinese population has grown year after year.

Isn’t it amazing? Did you know that billions of users are active on it every month? Do you know its history?

Let's dig a little deeper!


WeChat history origin

It all started in 2011, when the app was launched to the public. Seven years later, it had already become one of the most popular mobile apps in China. This was made possible by its creator, the Asian company Tencent. Or rather, the online video game giant. Soon after, it would become one of the most highly valued technology companies in the country, surpassing even the creator of Alipay, Alibaba.

Despite its launch that year, it was in 2010 that the project was initiated by Tencent's Research and Projects Centre in Guangzhou. The goal was to design a system that would compete with large messaging applications, such as Kik or WhatsApp.

At first, it only offered services based on sending voice messages or images, but shortly afterwards it would add new features, such as video clips or the possibility of finding nearby users thanks to geolocation. By 2012, WeChat already had 100 million registered users, and changed its name from Weixin to WeChat.

That same year, the app added new languages (Indonesian, Vietnamese, Portuguese and Thai). We could differentiate between WeChat Pay, as a mobile payment service, and WeChat Games, a platform based on video games. And they both coexisted in the same space since 2013. It was the installation of vending machines at the various underground stations in Beijing that drove the growth of this payment system.

The numbers grew steadily until 2016, when WeChat was already considered the most popular app in China. At the time it had more than 889 million active users per month, a figure that now exceeds 1 billion.

Among its latest developments is the development of a payment system based on facial recognition that is called Frog Pro. The functionality was unveiled at the Chongqing Smart China Expo in an attempt to upgrade its offline payments. In addition, it allows buyers to pay by scanning their face at the time of purchase.


The features of the WeChat payment system

Now that you know what WeChat is, we want to show you the features that make this application one of the most revolutionary systems for users:

  • It features user reviews.
  • Group shopping.
  • Investments.
  • Request a taxi.
  • Paying bills.
  • Making free calls.
  • Buying cinema tickets.
  • Paying quickly and easily with your mobile phone.

And for online stores:

  • Generating and accessing WeChat transaction reports in real time.
  • Chinese users avoid paying bank fees or carrying cash, which they appreciate.
  • Settlement in local currencies.
  • Easy integration at no front-end cost.
  • By accepting WeChat Pay, you make things easier for your Chinese customers.
  • And it allows them to pay using a payment method they know and fully trust.

The app is widely known as one of the most innovative and versatile apps in the world. In general, in order to carry out all these features we just mentioned, you would need different applications. However, with WeChat it is possible to do it on a single platform, saving space on your devices and time in your day to day life.

The system offers different options to receive payments, so you can use the most suitable one for your business.


How does WeChat Pay work?

At PayXpert, we would like to show you some solutions you can find in the platform:

  • Online web

Users of the app can read the QR code on their payment page and confirm it immediately. To do so, they select the product they want to purchase, the QR code will appear in the payment methods for the user to read it and they will pay for the product. The price is then displayed, and the user must confirm the payment with the password. Payment accepted!

  • Online mobile app

Users of the platform can purchase directly from your official account or access your e-commerce with the app. To do so, they go to the website and view the product, click and pay. They then confirm payment with the WeChat Pay password and it is processed.

  • In-store ticket

The user can scan the QR tag in the store and confirm the payment immediately. Both the seller and the buyer will receive the confirmation instantly. The user just needs to go to the store, look at the sticker, which is in a visible place, scan the QR code, where the price will be displayed, and confirm the payment with the password. Payment done!

  • In-store POS

The cashier enters the amount in local currency and the user scans it to confirm the payment. The customer receives the confirmation, and the POS device prints the receipt.

Do you want to know more about China's most popular payment method? Do you already know what WeChat is?

Give us a call.

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