Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

Paying close attention to the dynamics of ByteDance, we can almost find all the winds in 2022.

As one of the most tossing giants in the Chinese Internet industry, ByteDance has made a lot of new moves recently.

On January 27, according to several authoritative media reports such as the Financial Associated Press and China Securities Journal, ByteDance launched a number of new products/businesses in one go, including the Metaverse social app Party Island, the search product Wukong Search, and the game community. The product is well-selected, and a short-distance delivery robot is also being tested.

In response to the above reports, the relevant person in charge of Douyin told the media that Party Island is only a social product that is being tested in a small area, and has nothing to do with the Metaverse. Currently, an invitation code is required to use it. As for the situation of new products such as Wukong Search, Byte has not responded at present.

But in any case, it is an indisputable fact that ByteDance is unwilling to stop beating. Behind the continuous launch of new products and entry into new tracks, we must not forget the harsh reality of the slowdown in byte growth in the past year, multiple rounds of large layoffs, and the shrinking of the entire Internet advertising market.

The famous “Internet Banknote Printing Factory” may be eager to find a second growth point.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

From the Metaverse to the game community, ByteDance is chasing the wind like crazy

Judging from the new products launched so far, ByteDance’s strategy is very clear: keep up with all the new vents that are breaking out or are likely to break out.

On the one hand, the Metaverse, game social networking, and smart distribution are all industry tracks that have developed extremely fast and have great potential in the past two years, and they have already been crowded with players from all walks of life. It is indeed necessary for ByteDance to grab a seat as soon as possible.

Needless to say, the Metaverse has become the hottest concept in the past year since Zuckerberg brought the goods crazy, attracting countless Internet giants to enter the layout. According to PWC statistics, the market size of the Metaverse is expected to reach $467.4 billion in 2025. At present, foreign giants such as Meta and Microsoft, and domestic giants such as Tencent, Alibaba, and NetEase have all ended one after another, and ByteDance will naturally not be resigned.

The smart distribution industry, which is still in its infancy, is actually growing at a considerable rate. According to statistics from the Chinese Institute of Electronics, the domestic service robot market has maintained an average annual compound growth rate of 36.42% since the beginning of the tuyere in 2016. In 2021, the industry scale will reach 30.2 billion yuan, a growth rate higher than the global average.

In the view of the Institute of Value, due to the deepening aging of the population, rising labor costs, and the continuous expansion of logistics and distribution markets such as express delivery and takeaway, the growth potential of intelligent distribution and service robots will inevitably be further released.

As for the game industry, according to statistics from iResearch, by 2020, the market size of China’s game skill social networking industry will reach 26.6 billion, and it will maintain a compound annual growth rate of more than 44% from 2018 to 2022. Among them, many scenarios such as game live broadcast, game accompaniment, and game social networking have extremely high commercialization potential.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Picture from iResearch)

On the other hand, ByteDance has already had a layout in the fields of Metaverse, search, games and delivery robots in the past. The new products unveiled this time can complement the original products/services to a certain extent and achieve coordinated development.

On the search side, in addition to the newly released Wukong search, ByteDance also has two major businesses: Toutiao search and Douyin search. Relying on the huge traffic pool of Toutiao and Douyin, it has accumulated a certain share and user resources.

As we all know, the databases of Toutiao search and Douyin search are based on the content ecology of Toutiao and Douyin, and the main push is their own content. However, the independently operated Wukong search has added more new functions: such as consultation, video, etc., which is closer to third-party independent search engines such as Baidu in terms of product form, and also forms a dislocation with Toutiao and Douyin search, which will not cause resource competition.

According to media reports, the APP side of Wukong Search was born out of the previous Wukong browser, and it may take on the latter’s positioning to find increments for users in the sinking market. As we all know, advertising is the main source of revenue for ByteDance, and search is an important advertising marketing scenario. Although Wukong Search is unlikely to become the next Google, Baidu, or even Sogou and WeChat Souyi, it is at least a new growth point that can be expected for Bytes whose advertising revenue growth is slowing down.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image from UNsplash)

The same principle applies to products such as Party Island and Lingxuan.

In the field of Metaverse, ByteDance first won the VR/AR hardware manufacturer PICO at a high premium, and then invested in VR, virtual human and other industry start-ups many times, such as Li Weike Technology, Code Universe, Xiaoniaokan, etc. In addition, there is also news that ByteDance is developing the Metaverse social product Pixsoul internally, but this has not been officially confirmed.

The party island launched this time is a product that integrates and innovates on the basis of the above business.According to the official introduction, Party Island provides digital social services such as virtual images and real-time interaction. Users can create a digital avatar on its online platform and dress up according to their own preferences. In the view of the Institute of Value, this model is exactly the same as Roblox, the “first share of the Metaverse”, and has many similarities with the popular QQ show. Both are online social products that focus on immersion.

In the game and distribution robot industry, although Byte is not as high-profile as entering the Metaverse, the layout in the past few years has been the same.

According to the data reviewed by the Value Research Institute, there are nearly 10 robot start-ups invested by ByteDance during 2020-2021, including popular projects such as Weisi Technology. In the field of games, ByteDance has already fully deployed independent research and development, copyright agency and other businesses outside the community.According to official data, as of the first half of 2021, ByteDance’s game business department has more than 2,000 people, and the Douyin cloud game project also made a big debut in August last year.

In general, with the shrinking Internet advertising market and the growth bottleneck of Douyin and other competitive products, ByteDance will inevitably catch up with various outlets and open up a new growth curve for a period of time in the future.

From this perspective, if we keep an eye on the dynamics of ByteDance, we may be able to find all the vents in 2022.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image from UNsplash)

New products get together, who can become the next Douyin?

Launching new products together is not a new thing for ByteDance. After all, ByteDance is known as the “APP factory” in the domestic Internet industry.

However, in the past few years, it has been frantically iterating and pushing new ByteDance, and it is impossible to avoid an embarrassing problem: Since Douyin, ByteDance has not successfully created a high-quality APP with a win-win reputation and traffic. Famous “failures” include Wukong Q&A, which was stripped from Toutiao and benchmarked against Douban and Zhihu, and Duoshan, which carried the early social dreams of ByteDance.

Take Wukong Q&A as an example. After the official name change and the launch of the independent main site and APP in 2017, ByteDance has invested a lot of resources to support the growth of Wukong Q&A: from spending 1 billion to poach 300 Zhihu V, to Zhang Yiming’s personal end to shout the founder of Zhihu Zhang Liang, the ambition of Wukong’s question and answer is clear.

Under the leadership of the byte algorithm distribution model, Wukong Q&A did earn enough traffic and attention at the beginning of its launch. According to QuestMobile data, in October 2017, the MAU of Wukong Q&A reached 1.21 million, which is almost on a par with Baidu Baike’s 1.59 million, but there is still a certain gap from Zhihu’s 13 million + MAU in the same period.

However, highlights come early and go fast. A year later, Wukong Q&A MAU plummeted to 679,000, and marketing director Liu Chen resigned sadly. In July 2018, Wukong Q&A was officially merged into Wei Toutiao, which means that ByteDance’s attempt in the Q&A community market officially failed.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image via QuestMobile)

The fate of Duoshan and Wukong’s Q&A confirms the fact that ByteDance is notoriously “ruthless” in the industry. For businesses and products that do not see any hope of breaking through and take up too much resources, they will always be straightforward. Into the cold palace.

The Value Research Institute has noticed that, including the aforementioned Wukong Q&A, during January last year, Byte has successively studied the knowledge payment platform, and the mobile phone business and TNT display business acquired from Nuts have all been suspended. The new stone laboratory, which was reorganized from the original Hammer Technology team, was also merged into the education function business department in charge of Yang Luyu. Before being abolished or shut down, smart hardware, Q&A community, knowledge payment and other businesses are all the outlets that ByteDance is catching up with.

In this situation, people can’t help but want to ask: Party Island, Wukong Search, Spiritual Selection, who will be the next Duoshan or Wukong Q&A?

Of course, from the perspective of bytes, it is natural to hope that the next Douyin can be hatched in this series of new products. But the key point is that Byte may need to adjust its past product incubation model and operational thinking in order to avoid repeating the same mistakes: for example, it cannot recommend the model in superstitious algorithms, and become more patient.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image via Pexels)

On the one hand, the failure of Wukong’s Q&A and Duoshan is largely due to the fact that ByteDance is too superstitious about the past “explosive methodologies”-that is, obsessed with replicating the content distribution of Toutiao in the new social and Q&A community tracks, User operation model, and lack of enough patience.

As mentioned earlier, Wukong Q&A went from independent operation, increased resource support to strategic bankruptcy, and merged into Wei Toutiao, but it only took about a year. Most of the community platforms that have gained a firm foothold in the market, such as Douban, Zhihu, and Station B, have experienced more than 10 years of exploration and dormancy. Station B was established in 2009, and the earliest Douban was established in 2005. Growth and commercial exploration have been slow.

The “APP factory” that was growing rapidly at that time naturally lacked such patience.

On the other hand, escaping from algorithms has become a trend that cannot be ignored in the last two years — especially among the younger user base. In Douban’s “Anti-Technology Dependency Group”, there are more than 16,000 young people who want to “break” with the algorithm. They are committed to getting rid of the algorithm and escape from the information cocoon through various means:

For example, when viewing videos and online shopping, try to use the web version to reduce the number of APPs loaded on mobile phones; and when browsing Zhihu, Toutiao, Bilibili and other APPs that use algorithms, big data models, and targeted pushes to users, do not register. “Incognito Mode” without logging in.

As user preferences change, and relying on algorithms to make a fortune, and relying on algorithm recommendations to incubate the two national-level applications of Toutiao and Douyin, Bytedance, it is time to adjust your style of play.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image from UNsplash)

Improving the content of hard technology is the top priority

The good news is that ByteDance has realized its shortcomings in the past two years and is willing to take the initiative to make changes.

The most direct evidence is to abandon the large, medium and small front desk model that has been in use since its establishment, sort out six major business segments, and adopt a BU business group management model that is more similar to that of Tencent and Alibaba.

In the view of the Value Research Institute, the advantage of the large, medium and Taiwan model lies in the word “fast”: it can quickly establish an iterative mechanism, incubate new products, and form a business team. After adjusting to the BU model, Byte’s organizational structure and various business lines will become more stable, and I believe that it will show more patience for new projects in the future.

However, it is not enough to adjust the organizational structure and launch new products. If Byte wants to keep up with the trend of the times, it needs to strengthen a short board as soon as possible – hard technology strength.

When Tik Tok was making great progress in overseas markets, international giants such as Facebook and Microsoft felt unprecedented pressure, while Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and other bigwigs still scoffed at ByteDance’s algorithm-driven underlying technology. According to the Wall Street Journal report, Zuckerberg even bluntly stated at an internal meeting in 2019:

“The reason why Tik Tok is popular is mainly the result of spending money on promotion. Once the promotion is stopped, the retention rate will drop.”

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image from UNsplash)

Although the runs of competitors such as Facebook and Microsoft have commercial competition factors, and Zuckerberg’s remarks also have obvious personal emotions, one thing is certain: in the technology circle, algorithm technology is indeed difficult to put on the table. .

In fact, ByteDance is also aware of its own development shortcomings and has strengthened its layout in the hard technology industry in the past two years. Data from DoNews statistics show that during 2020 and 2021, in addition to the entertainment media industry that is highly related to its own business, Byte also invested heavily in areas such as enterprise services, artificial intelligence, advanced manufacturing, and intelligent hardware.

It is a pity that after the regulators deliberately controlled the disorderly expansion of capital and the war investment department was dismissed, ByteDance could no longer occupy a seat in the technology circle through investment casting.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image from DoNews)

Therefore, Byte must personally end the game and strengthen the shortcomings. The Institute of Value believes that the current direction of Byte’s efforts is relatively clear, and it has seized several main lines: cloud computing, chips and AI, and these cutting-edge technologies will show a trend of mutual integration.

Taking the chip as an example, although the entry time is not long, ByteDance has taken out the usual vigorous and resolute measures to gradually catch up with competitors such as Baidu. In July last year, some media broke the news that ByteDance cut off Hu Baidu, robbed a number of chip-related R&D talents, and accelerated the independent research and development of cloud AI chips and Arm server chips.

The combination of chips and AI technology is the current focus of ByteDance’s efforts, and it is also in line with the development trend of the industry. More importantly, self-developed chips are also a great help for basic service businesses such as cloud computing. Referring to Alibaba, as the leader in the domestic IaaS public cloud market, Alibaba established Dharma Institute as early as 2017, incubated Pingtouge Semiconductor Company, and successively launched a number of high-end chips.

In addition to Alibaba, leading cloud service providers such as Amazon and Huawei also have their own server chips, and Tencent is also increasing its chip R&D business. In the view of the Value Research Institute, cloud service providers’ self-made cores will become an irreversible trend in the next few years.

Metaverse, search, game community, robots, ByteDance is looking for a second growth point

(Image from UNsplash)

The Institute of Value said in a previous series of articles “Looking forward to 2022” that for domestic Internet companies, the next year will be a critical period for the abdication of traffic and the rise of hard technology. Domestic Internet and technology companies need to adapt to market changes as soon as possible. Only by improving the technological content can we have a chance to win the future.

As a big winner in the era of traffic competition, algorithms have helped ByteDance write a growth myth, but no model can be successful forever. All in all, times are changing, users are also changing, and bytes must keep beating in order to seize new opportunities.

write at the end

In recent days, Zhang Yiming, who has not appeared for a long time, has once again become the focus of media discussion.

According to media reports such as China Times, after stepping down as CEO of ByteDance, Zhang Yiming further unbundled with ByteDance and recently stepped down as legal persons of several affiliated companies, including Beijing ByteDance Network Technology Co., Ltd. and Beijing ByteDance Network Technology Co., Ltd. , Shanghai Zijump Network Technology Co., Ltd., etc. In November last year, Zhang Yiming also resigned from the global board of ByteDance.

After further unbundling with Zhang Yiming, ByteDance will undoubtedly usher in a new era under the leadership of Liang Rubo. Unfortunately, Liang Rubo is facing a difficult time: the cold winter of Internet advertising, the anti-monopoly tide sweeping the world, and ByteDance, which has grown rapidly for nearly nine years, slammed on the brakes in the past year.

However, it is not broken. The last two years have been the winter of the Internet, and it is also a critical period for the entire industry to squeeze out the bubble, get rid of traffic dependence, and seek healthy growth. Of course, ByteDance will not easily miss this transformation opportunity.

Whether it’s the Metaverse or social games, it’s not a bad thing to cast a wide net and try more. I just hope that Liang Rubo can really find a new path that suits him as soon as possible through these attempts.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:
Coinyuppie is an open information publishing platform, all information provided is not related to the views and positions of coinyuppie, and does not constitute any investment and financial advice. Users are expected to carefully screen and prevent risks.

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