12 must-read tech stories in China this week


CTW - China tech news this week

Even as China is touching the moon with its lunar mission, plenty is happening on Earth: the country’s Great Firewall is extending its reach, Chinese companies are growing by launching new products, expanding overseas, and making strategic investments. It’s an eventful week for technology in China.

1. The Jade Rabbit has landed: China touches down robotic rover on moon

Two weeks ago, China blasted off on its third ever moon mission. But the objective this time was all new – to land on the lunar surface.

2. “Godfather of China’s scrappy entrepreneurial spirit”: Alibaba’s Jack Ma is FT’s person of the year

While Time magazine was busy weighing up the Pope and Edward Snowden, the Financial Times has been looking elsewhere for its most influential figure this year.

3. Blame game: what’s the root of Chinese entrepreneurs’ “lack of creativity”?

It’s a catch-22 argument: investors don’t reward creativity, so the Chinese have no impetus to be creative.

4. Boosted by WeChat, China’s mobile gaming market worth $590 million in Q3

The new Plants vs Zombies 2 is also to thank for more smartphone gaming in the country this summer – despite PvZ 2 causing a furore in China over supposed price gouging.

5. As China’s demand for domestic help grows, Ayibang gets series A funding

The Ayibang team reckons that it’s both a safer and more convenient method of finding domestic help than the normal way of asking friends for connections, or turning to online or newspaper classified ads.

6. In yet another Chinese tech IPO, Autohome revs onto Wall Street

The latest one is Autohome (NYSE:ATHM), a car news, listings, and classifieds website, which hit the New York Stock Exchange last night priced at $17 per share.

7. Xbox One to hit shelves in China by September 2014

The Xbox One will be released on the Chinese mainland September next year, according to Funshion CEO Luo Jiangchun.

8. China blocks censorship circumvention software Lantern after a surge of Chinese users

The Lantern team explained in a blog post how the infiltration into this invitation-only free service happened. But the team is fighting back: in theory, Lantern can unblock itself with new servers, a software update, and by better screening of the users it accepts.

9. China will use world’s fastest supercomputer to forecast smog

Whereas a refurbished 1999 Gateway PC can probably get the job done in most parts of the world, China needs something a bit stronger.

10. After a long wait, China’s controversial Jawbone Up clone is now up for pre-order

That’s still a lot cheaper than the Jawbone Up, which retails in China at an official price of RMB 1,099 ($180).

11. Alibaba invests $364 million in electronic appliance maker Haier to improve China’s e-commerce logistics

This isn’t the first time Alibaba and Haier have teamed up.

12. AngelHack CEO: “If you go after the expat community, you’ll never be a truly global company”

One of the biggest challenges for hackathons in China is actually getting developers to show up.

That’s all for this week, folks! For our full spread of China coverage, you might like to subscribe to our China RSS feed.

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