Home / News / India /  Sharechat getting half a million new users an hour since ban on 59 Chinese apps

Homegrown social networking platform Sharechat on Wednesday said it has been getting half a million new users an hour since the Indian government announced a ban on 59 Chinese apps. The apps that have been banned includes Bytedance-owned Helo, which was a direct competitor of Sharechat in India. According to Sharechat, the regional social media platform got 15 million new users in 36 hours.

The company isn’t the only one to benefit from TikTok, Helo, Vigo Video and Likee being banned in India. Between them, TikTok, Helo, and Vigo Video had nearly 300 million users in the country, while Likee had over 115 million users, a significant number of whom are from India.

Sharechat’s growth is slower compared with that of other Indian rivals, such as Roposo. The Glance InMobi-owned video-sharing platform had said on Tuesday that it gained 10 million new users in as little as 12 hours after the ban. Roposo told Mint that it had been getting 6 lakh new users per hour on Tuesday.

Similarly, viral short video platform Chingari reported that it had reached 3.5 million users on Tuesday, growing at 80,000 new users per hour. Lesser known platforms such as Trell and Bolo Indya also reported above-average growth due to the ban.

The ban has also left many TikTok users seeking new platforms for their content. Popular TikTok influencers Prem Vats and Noor Afshan switched to Roposo late on Tuesday. They had 9.5 million and 9 million followers, respectively, on TikTok. According to Varun Saxena, founder of Bolo Indya, a majority of users switching from TikTok to Bolo are from the Edutok segment of the Chinese platform.

While experts have said that the ban, coupled with anti-China sentiments in the country, does create an opportunity for Indian brands, whether these new users will stick to these platforms remains to be seen. Sharechat says it has over 150 million registered users right now, of whom 60 million are monthly active users.


Prasid Banerjee

An engineering dropout, Prasid Banerjee has reported on technology in India for various publications. He reports on technology through text and audio, focusing on its core aspects, like consumer impact, policy and the future.
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