ByteDance is one of a new wave of Chinese tech companies challenging the older and more established Chinese players, led by BAT (Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent). TikTok is the first Chinese app to take the world by storm, and its owner is now rubbing shoulders with the likes of YouTube and Facebook.
Few people outside China will have heard of Bytedance, the Beijing-based software startup that creates fiendishly addictive content apps using world-leading artificial intelligence technology. However, more than 200 million people in China—or over one in four of the country’s mobile users—use Bytedance’s products every day, and now the company has ambitions to hook the rest of the world on its apps too. Huge traffic brings customized contents to Bytedance users, which is the magic code for its success. But copyright lawsuits and competition from the BAT companies are just two of the challenges Bytedance faces.