Kaylene Hong was Asia Reporter for The Next Web between 2013 and 2014, based in Singapore. She is bilingual in English and Mandarin. Stay in Kaylene Hong was Asia Reporter for The Next Web between 2013 and 2014, based in Singapore. She is bilingual in English and Mandarin. Stay in touch via Twitter or Google+.
After releasing a browser for smart TVs last month, China’s UCWeb has launched a PC browser today, as it seeks to capture as many eyeballs as it can across a variety of platforms.
UCWeb is behind the popular mobile UC Browser, which has over 500 million users around the globe and uses data compression technology to minimize the cost of browsing and downloading. The Chinese firm says that similar to its mobile counterpart, UC Browser for PC prides itself on speed. It also has a series of mobile-inspired features such as predicting user behavior and preloading pages, infinite scrolling, and compressing sites on the server side so pages load faster.
Other key features include multiscreen interoperability for users to share files across different devices with UC Browser installed on them, and sync content across devices. For even more functionality, it also comes with a market featuring third-party plugins for music streaming and ad blocking among others.
UCWeb’s co-founder and president He Xiaopeng says that the company wants to “disrupt the staid PC browser market in an unprecedented way” with its background in mobile. However, this is limited to the Chinese market for now, and there are currently no plans for an English version.
What’s more, as UCWeb counts e-commerce giant Alibaba among its investors and founder Jack Ma — an iconic figure in China’s tech industry — sits on its board, Alibaba has been providing technology input, distribution channels and integration of services, in addition to other partnerships.
UC’s PC browser was a joint effort with Alibaba. It features integration with Alibaba’s shopping sites Taobao and Tmall, which give online shoppers a more streamlined experience — going through listings is speedier due to UC Browser’s site data compression, there is a price comparison engine to help them make decisions, while Alipay is integrated for billing.
Headline image via UCWeb
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