How Mobile News Apps like of Sohu are Making a Killing ?

Mobile News AppThe mobile news app market is an area of particularly intense competition amongst many internet Giants from Google to Sohu, Baidu, Times of India etc. According to Analysys International, Sohu’s app claimed a 31.8% market share in terms of cumulative downloads from the major app stores by 1Q13.

Sohu’s business model for Mobile News App is of Particular interest for us. The cumulative downloads of Sohu News is more than 5m at present, while the figure is roughly 1m for NetEase and Phoenix New Media and 0.5m for Sina.

By leveraging an open strategy, Sohu aims to grow its news app into one of the largest media platforms in China. Sohu has invited around 550 media players onto the platform, supplying users with a wide range of choices. Reference News (Cankao Xiaoxi), China’s largest post by subscriptions, for instance, now has 5m followers on Sohu’s news app, which is even greater than the 3.5m offline subscriptions it has. Except for Sohu, other players are leveraging their own existing advantages from other angles to do battle in the market.

Sohu is reportedly planning to commence a sharing program on ad revenue and subscription fees with media partners in 2014. The details are yet to be announced. On the cost side, Sohu, for instance, invested RMB100m in marketing and pre-installation charges in 2012 and would likely funnel more such effort in 2013.

Tencent is utilizing its instant messaging products to promote its news app. Weixin, for instance, is equipped with a plug-in to receive news flow every day. For Sina, its news app’s comment system is deeply integrated with Sina Weibo. For Phoenix New Media, the unique feature of the news app is PNM’s proprietary in-depth news articles.

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