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Cell Phone SMS News in Chinese Newspaper Groups: A Case Study of Yunnan Daily Press Group. Liu Cheng & Axel Bruns Creative Industries Faculty Queensland University of Technology. Mobile Telephony and Yndaily. Continuing mobile boom in China:

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Cell phone sms news in chinese newspaper groups a case study of yunnan daily press group l.jpg

Cell Phone SMS News in Chinese Newspaper Groups:A Case Study of Yunnan Daily Press Group

Liu Cheng & Axel BrunsCreative Industries FacultyQueensland University of Technology

Mobile telephony and yndaily l.jpg
Mobile Telephony and Yndaily

  • Continuing mobile boom in China:

    • rapid growth in number of users, volume of messages, range of services

    • but focus of studies largely on key areas (Shanghai, Beijing, etc.)

    • dominated by China Mobile and China Unicom

  • Yunnan Daily Press Group:

    • key regional news organisation

    • case study for developments in other regional areas

    • SMS, WAP, MMS news services since 2002

    • overseen by Liu Cheng, vice-director of Yndaily information and network centre

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SMS Use in China

  • SMS development initially slow:

    • limitation to Latin script until 1997

    • thus absence of SMS value-added services

    • China Monternet (Mobile+Internet) as first key service in 2001

  • Common value-added services today:

    • Information, including news, weather, examinations, and English learning;

    • Entertainment, including short message games, mobile phone pictures, ring tones downloads, jokes, and other entertainment participation;

    • Communications, including mobile chat, and email;

    • Commercial, including mobile phone stock trading and mobile phone banking; and

    • Special services, including location-based services (similar to GPS) (China Mobile, 2006)

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The Mobile Services Downturn

  • Problems with mobile services:

    • unethical business practices until 2005

    • poor management, lack of regulation

    • uninvited messages, inability to cancel

    • illegal billing practices

    • government intervention, some providers shut down

    • also negative effect on legitimate providers

    • still overall market growth, but notably slowed

    • emergence of key market leaders / oligopolists

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Mobile News in Yunnan Province

  • Established in 2002:

    • joint venture between Yunnan Mobile and Yunnan Daily Press

    • harnessing existing content from Yndaily publications

    • cross-promotion through Yndaily and Yunnan Mobile products

    • initial problem of technological limitations

      • 70 Chinese characters per SMS message

      • 2-5 messages per day

      • requires tight editing

    • growth and decline echoing market development

  • New opportunities:

    • MMS newspaper

    • 3G services

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Key Strategies

  • Yndaily’s key options for growing the market:

    • Leveraging existing content sources

      • building on established news brands

    • Interactive options and participatory journalism

      • user participation growing in spite of overall market downturn

    • MMS Services

      • overcoming character limitations, incorporating image, audio, video content

    • 3G Services

      • but problems with technology changeover and market oligopoly

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Convergence Opportunities

  • Beyond mobile telephony:

    • especially 3G devices no longer phones

    • restructuring of Yndaily as multimedia group

    • increasing focus on user involvement

  • Towards new models

    • growing focus on product R&D: e.g. through the China Digital Newspaper Lab

    • but need for better and more streamlined government regulation

    • threat of oligopoly led by China Mobile (especially in 3G market)

    • need for further insights beyond the rapid growth in use