TikTook isn’t the one new media app with Chinese background that’s making waves within the U.S. News Break, a information app based by China’s media veteran Jeff Zheng with groups in Beijing, Shanghai, Seattle and Mountain View, has been sitting among the many high three information apps within the U.S. App Store since March, based on third-party knowledge from Sensor Tower.
Positioned as a information aggregator centered on native reporting, the platform surged to be the third-most downloaded U.S. iOS app throughout the board in mid-March.
The fledgling information app introduced this week a considerable increase because it onboards Harry Shum as its board chairman. Shum is the previous president of Microsoft AI and Research Group and performed a key function in establishing the Microsoft Research Asia lab, which has skilled a raft of China’s high AI abilities together with the founding father of autonomous driving unicorn Momenta.
News Break is staffed with different storied abroad Chinese tech bosses. Jeff Zheng, the founding chief govt, headed up Yahoo Labs in Beijing the place he oversaw algorithm enhancements in search, media, promoting and cell. In 2011, he left Yahoo to launch Yidian Zixun, the Beijing-based startup seen early on as the primary rival of Toutiao, the hit information app that made ByteDance a family title in China earlier than Douyin emerged. Together with different algorithm-driven information apps, the duo modified the habits of lots of of hundreds of thousands in China from consuming human-curated information to machine-recommended content material with minimal human oversight.
News Break is Zheng’s effort to duplicate Yidian Zixun’s success in international markets together with his co-founder Ren Xuyang, a former Baidu govt. Founded in Silicon Valley in 2015, News Break now boasts 23 million month-to-month customers with a rising community of over 10,000 content material suppliers.
The kind of customized studying expertise pioneered by Toutiao is now a default function throughout media apps within the U.S., mentioned (in Chinese) Vincent Wu, chief working officer of News Break, at an occasion in Silicon Valley. To stand out from the gang, the corporate serves up native information and happenings for readers, for Wu noticed that America’s mainstream media focus overwhelmingly on nationwide affairs and movie star gossip, “information that’s irrelevant to my day-to-day.”
“Only high-quality, hyper-relevant native information can present useful data to readers,” he added.
ByteDance has tried exporting the Toutiao mannequin by TopBuzz, however the abroad version by no means achieved mainstream success and is reportedly searching for a purchaser.
Other large names concerned in News Break vary from Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang who joined because the chief advisor in addition to Wu, HuffPost’s former operations head.
Particle Media, the Delaware-registered working entity of News Break, has raised over $20 million so far from buyers together with IDG Capital, ZhenFund and Ding Lei, the founding father of Chinese on-line media and gaming big NetEase.