UCWeb aspires to change the way content is consumed in India. The Alibaba Mobile Business Group has launched a news app called UCNews that leverages on big data to give customised content to its users in India. The app is exclusively developed for the Indian market and consumers.
The company is positioning the app as a one-stop source for trending and curated news. UCNews covers almost all the categories ranging from sports, technology, politics and entertainment.
Commenting on how UCNews is different from the other news aggregators, Kenny Ye, general manager, UCWeb, Alibaba Mobile Business group, said, “UCNews is different from others because we are WAP first and not app first. We use the browser as a platform to actually initiate the traffic that is coming to the product.
We have 58 per cent of market share, which means there are so many people who understand UCBrowser and if they get their kind of content to consume on UCBrowser, it enhances their overall experience. UCNews is not just restricted to news content only. It will also have content from bloggers, who may have a different perspective on an event like a football match or a political debate. We will have publishers, bloggers and even individual publishers on our platform. That is why we call ourselves different.”
UCNews targets a young audience of 18-25 years. The platform allows customisation to the last level. So, if someone wants content only from a particular media organisation, he/she would get content only from these organisations.
But there is a catch. If UC Browser passes browsing information, Flipkart can show its buyers more relevant products. Last year, a Canadian research firm Citizen Labs alleged that UC Browser leaked sensitive user data in return of $1 billion. Kenny said it doesn’t mine individual data.