In recent technical disruptions among big technology firms, Tencent Holdings, a leading Chinese tech giant, has apologised for an outage in its streaming service, Tencent Video. This incident occurred shortly after significant service failures at Alibaba Group Holding's cloud service and Didi Chuxing's ride-hailing application.
Tencent Video faces technical difficulties
Tencent Video encountered “temporary technical issues” on Sunday, as reported on its official Weibo account. The service interruption led to user complaints, with some sharing screenshots of error messages like “failure to retrieve data.” Subscribers also reported issues with their subscription plans. By Sunday evening, Tencent Video announced that services were gradually being restored and extended apologies for the inconvenience. However, as of Monday, Tencent had yet to provide further comments on the service's current status.
The competitive landscape of video streaming in China
In fierce competition with other leading Chinese streaming sites, such as Baidu's iQiyi and Alibaba's Youku, Tencent Video is navigating an increasingly challenging market. This sector is also facing new competition from the rising popularity of short video sites. Despite these challenges, Tencent Video reported 117 million subscribers in the third quarter, albeit a 2% decline year-on-year. The platform offers monthly premium content at 30 yuan (US$4.21).
Recent outages in other major tech services
The Tencent Video outage follows recent service disruptions in other major Chinese tech platforms. Didi, the largest ride-hailing service in the country, experienced a two-day breakdown affecting several major cities. This incident caused significant inconvenience for its 400 million users. Alibaba Cloud also faced two significant outages in the past month, impacting customers in mainland China, Hong Kong, and the United States. These incidents affected popular applications like DingTalk, Xianyu, and Taobao.
Tencent's response and ongoing business changes
In response to its service outage in March, Tencent's widely-used app WeChat, which boasts 1.34 billion monthly active users, was summoned by China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology for explanations and corrective actions. Separately, Tencent plans to shut down Moo, a smaller music streaming service targeting the youth, by the end of the year. This closure is part of Tencent's broader strategy to focus on its main music apps: Kugou, Kuwo, and QQ Music.