Updated Dec 2, 2020
While Google Play and the Apple App Store dominate the mobile app market in the West, China’s market makes it more challenging for Western companies and brands to compete. Here is what you need to know about the top app stores for publishing a mobile app or game in China.
The mobile app store landscape in China is different from the West for two reasons:
- Tight government control due to censorship and other laws
- Widespread, rapid adoption of mobile technology, propelled by local companies and homegrown software untethered from the dominant Western corporations.
To conform with Chinese licensing laws, Apple has a different version of the Apple App Store available in China for iPhone users. App and game publishers and developers must launch their apps on both versions of the Apple App Store to reach the entirety of the world market.
Here are the top app stores that Android app and game developers should know about if they want to launch and market in China:
The Top 15 Chinese App Stores
- Tencent My App Store (应用宝) – Tencent is the largest internet company in Asia, publisher of the wildly popular WeChat app used ubiquitously across China. Though the company does not produce any mobile phones, its app store has remained the most popular in China for many years.
Official Website: https://android.myapp.com/
- Huawei App Market Store (华为应用市场) – Huawei is a large company manufacturing telecommunications equipment and consumer electronics. In recent years, Huawei’s mobile phones have become one of the best-selling phones world-wide, and is one of the top-selling phone brands in Mainland China. Huawei is also making headlines for its groundbreaking 5G network technology being rolled out across the world.
Official Website: http://app.hicloud.com/
- 360 Mobile Assistant (360手机助手) – 360 Mobile Assistant is a Chinese app store from Qihoo 360, a Chinese internet security company with products including antivirus software and a popular secure web browser used by millions across China.
Official Website: http://zhushou.360.cn/
- Oppo Software Store (OPPO软件商店) – Oppo (BBK Electronics) is a Chinese consumer electronics and mobile communications company with popular products such as smartphones. Oppo’s app store has grown in popularity recently. With about 125 million active users per month.
Official Website: https://store.oppomobile.com/
- VIVO App Store (vivo应用商店) – VIVO is a Chinese consumer electronics company that makes smartphones, accessories, software, and provides online services. BBK Electronics is its parent company, which also owns Oppo and OnePlus, which each make their own brands of smartphones. VIVO app store is the default store installed on all VIVO phones sold in China.
Official Website: https://dev.vivo.com.cn/distribute/appStore
- MIUI App Store (小米应用商店) – Xiaomi is a very popular Chinese electronics company with products including smartphones, mobile apps, laptops, and home appliances. Its app store is the default app store installed on its phone across China. Xiaomi’s mobile phones ship with its own Android firmware (MIUI), based on Google’s Android operating system.
Official Website: http://app.xiaomi.com/
- Baidu Mobile Assistant (百度手机助手) – Even before Google left the Chinese market in 2010, Baidu had been the country’s largest search engine. It remains the dominant player to this day, which is why it is often referred to as “The Google of China”. Baidu’s app store, Baidu Mobile Assistant, is always served up as an option when users search for an app on baidu.com.
Official Website: http://as.baidu.com/
- Anzhi Market (安智市场) – Anzhi Market is a China app store that has been around for many years. It has an active community that allow members to discuss and rate Android apps.
Official Website: http://www.anzhi.com/applist.html
- China Mobile MM Store (MM应用商场) – China Mobile is the state-owned telecom company in China that provides mobile services across Mainland China. China Mobile also has its own app store called MM Store. They also have one of the lowest revenue-share arrangements of all the most popular app stores, taking only a 30% cut.
Official Website: http://mm.10086.cn/store
- PP Assistant (PP助手) – Alibaba’s app store in China is PP Assistant. In addition to apps for Android, PP Assistant also has two app stores for iOS, including one for iOS devices that have been “jailbroken”.
Official Website: https://www.25pp.com/
- Sogou Mobile Assistant (搜狗手机助手) – Sogou is originally a search engine and smartwatch company, launched in 2004. In 2006, the company invented Sogou Pinyin, which is now the dominant input platform in China for both desktop and mobile systems. They are currently focused on developing AI, lip reading, and voice recognition technology for its smartwatches and translation devices. Sogou is a Beijing-based public company, listed on the New York Stock Exchange. They are currently majority-owned by Tencent, and it is the only search engine able to search WeChat public accounts.
Official Website: http://zhushou.sogou.com/
- HiMarket (安卓市场) – HiMarket was founded in Sept 2009 by 91 Wireless (also the creator of 91 Wireless Assistant), which was later bought out by Baidu in 2013 for $1.85 billion USD, which was the most expensive deal at that time. The HiMarket app store has both an English and Chinese version of its app store.
Official Website: http://apk.hiapk.com/
- Wandoujia (豌豆荚) – Wandoujia was founded in 2009 by a former employee of Google China and a telecom engineer. It was China’s 5th largest Android app store when it was purchased by Alibaba in 2016. The company developed a multimedia marketplace as an alternative to streaming large amounts of data that allows users to search for videos across multiple platforms, download them locally, and compress them.
Official Website: http://www.wandoujia.com/apps
- Samsung App Store (三星应用商店) – Samsung Electronics is a South Korean multi-national manufacturer of smartphones, TVs, semiconductors, and other home electronics. Its flagship series of smartphones is the Galaxy series, and the Samsung App Store comes preinstalled on all Samsung smartphones. In 2019, Samsung announced it would stop manufacturing mobile phones in China due to lack of demand.
Official Website: https://www.samsung.com/my/apps/galaxy-store/
- Lenovo LeStore (联想乐商店) – Lenovo is a Chinese multi-national company, founded in 1984 and headquartered in Beijing. By 2019, it was the world’s largest PC vendor by unit sales, but they also develop storage devices, IT management software, smartphones, tablets and smart TVs running the Android operating system. The Lenovo Le Store is preinstalled on many of its devices, including Smart TVs.
Other Chinese App Stores
Here are some additional app stores that often chart high on our official AppInChina App Store Index:
For the latest detailed statistics, visit the full AppInChina App Store Index.