Total hongbao volume on Chinese New Year eve exceeded one billion on WeChat compared with 240 million on Alipay. The volume during the same period on Weiob was 101 million who started Hongbao campaign on 2 Feb 2015.
Hongbao, or red envelope, is the Chinese people’s traditions and customs. Every Chinese New Year’s (“CNY”) Eve, a junior will be given some money, packed in a red envelope. In ancient times, the money is used to scare a monster. Gradually, envelopes also became the best carrier between relatives and friends for blessings and good luck in special occasions such as wedding, birthdays, and new-born’s 100th day.
In 2014, WeChat hongbao attracted 8 million users from CNY eve and the eighth day giving away 40 million virtual red envelopes. QQ also gave away virtual hongbao roth 3 billion yuan. 154 million users participated in 637 million hongbao competition on CNY eve.
WeChat collaborated with CCTV this year during Chinese New Year 2015 giving away 500 million yuan cash hongbao and 3 billion coupon hongbao. CCTV programs, especially Spring Festival Gala invited viewers to use “Shake” feature on WeChat to get hongbao including cash and coupons.
Users uploaded 39 million family photos on WeChat, a few of which were shown on Spring Festival Gala show.
Total hongbao volume on Chinese New Year eve exceeded one billion on WeChat compared with 240 million on Alipay; interactions via WeChat Shake reached 11 billion from 8pm till 00:48am according to data from WeChat. 101 million Weibo hongbao, sponsored by companies and celebrities, helped Weibo reach daily active users of 102 million.
In addition, 14.3 billion WeChat messages were sent and 260 million posts were published on CNY eve 2015.
At 8pm, 9pm, 10pm, 11pm, and 12pm sharp on CNY eve, Alipay offers users fifteen minutes to open Alipay Wallet app and “catch” the virtual envelope worth a total of 100 million yuan. Jack Ma also gave away one million hongbao out of his own pocket in two minutes.
If Alipay hongbao can be shared on WeChat, Alipay might be the winner in the hongbao war as it has more users than WeChat Pay; unfortunately WeChat also knows that and blocked it from being shared. Alipay deployed a “hongbao password” tactic so that users can share photos on WeChat Moments with friends who can use the password on the photos and enter in Alipay Wallet app to get the hongbao.
Unfortunately, that was a bit troublesome than using WeChat hongbao; and WeChat provides social features with its hongbao.