New kind of QR code for China
WeChat launches new style QR codes For Mini Programs. China social networks
WeChat launched a completely new kind of QR code for China entitled Mini Program Codes (小程序码). How do the new codes work? Why are WeChat launching them? and Is WeChat copying Facebook now?
How do they work? China social networks
For a WeChat user the new QR codes work exactly the same as the old ones. Long press to open up the scan option from within WeChat and use the front facing camera when you see one offline. The codes are only for developers of WeChat mini programs. As long as you have the latest version of WeChat currently version 6.5.7 then you will be able to scan the new codes.
WeChat QR codes are already proprietary to WeChat and have been so for a long long time.
Try scanning a WeChat QR code with Taobao’s scanner. Again you won’t be able to. You’ll get a message like this below.
Is WeChat copying Facebook now? China social networks
For once Western messaging apps can finally claim that WeChat is copying them. It’s nearly always the other way round as WeChat is widely considered to be 2 to 3 years ahead of Western messaging apps.Facebook Messenger, Snapchat & Kik have had their own pretty versions of QR codes for a considerable time now.
So why are WeChat launching new QR codes now? China social networks
The new style QR codes are part of a simply staggering number of new features for Mini Programs that WeChat has released in the past weeks. It’s quite unprecedented to see so many new features being rolled out in such a short space of time even for WeChat.
Will the new QR codes be a success? China social networks
The novelty factor of the new QR codes will definitely lead to a short term spike in mini program usage. We can expect most WeChat users to give the new QR codes a try simply out of curiosity which in itself will be a huge short term boost to the mini programs initiative. In the longer term the only thing we know right now for sure is that Alipay will shamelessly copy and paste the shit out of this.