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In China, Facebook Tests the Waters With a Stealth App

SHANGHAI — Facebook and many of its apps have been blocked in China for years.
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.

Now the social network is trying a different way into China: by authorizing the release of a new app there that does not carry the Facebook name.

Facebook approved the May debut of a photo-sharing app, called Colorful Balloons, in China, according to a person with knowledge of the company’s plans, who declined to be named because the information is politically sensitive. The app, which has not previously been reported, shares the look, function and feel of Facebook’s Moments app. It was released through a separate local company and without any hint that the social network is affiliated with it.

The stealthy and anonymous release of an app by a major foreign technology company in China is unprecedented. It shows the desperation — and frustration — of global tech companies as they try to break into the world’s largest online market. It also underscores the lengths they are willing to go, and their increasing acceptance of the idea that standards for operating in China are different from elsewhere.
In China, Facebook Tests the Waters With a Stealth App In China, Facebook Tests the Waters With a Stealth App Reviewed by ThankGod Okoye on August 13, 2017 Rating: 5