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Facebook anonymously launched an app in China

13 August 2017

Colorful Balloons appears to mimic the look and feel of Facebook's Moments app, which allows users to share photos with friends and family members. As we said, the local company doesn't show any affiliation with Facebook. However, tech companies are incessantly striving to get into China. China has locked out big tech giants, including Google, from its 700 million internet users.

Last month, in a crackdown on Internet services by the government, Apple had removed all major VPN apps from the App Store in China.

"We have long said that we are interested in China, and are spending time understanding and learning more about the country in different ways", a spokesperson says. The Times says it illustrates the "desperation" of tech firms as they attempt - exhaustively - to break into China's online market.

This isn't the only time Facebook has tried to tap into the Chinese market.

"It's not a mere business thing", said Teng Bingsheng, a professor of strategic management at Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business.

"Colorful Balloons can group users' phone pictures and videos based on time, locations and characters".

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has spent years courting the potentially lucrative Chinese market: He's given a talk in Mandarin and gone jogging in Tiananmen Square.

Colorful Balloons represents the opposite approach - one that is low profile.

The app was released by a local company and doesn't carry any of Facebook's branding.

However, the room number listed in company registration documents could not be found amid a series of shabby, small offices on the building's fourth floor.

Breaking the precedents, Facebook quietly launched an app in China in May this year.

Facebook anonymously launched an app in China