Tencent throws a bone to international users with 10TB worth of free storage


You might recall Chinese internet giant Tencent giving its domestic users 10TB worth of free storage back in August. It was a big deal at the time, not least because it dwarfed the 1TB of free cloud storage its competitors were offering.

Now, it looks like Tencent, part owned by emerging markets internet and media giant Naspers, is extending the offer to its international users. According to US tech news site PandoDaily, an English-language version of the service will roll out early next year.

As with the Chinese version of the service, in order to access your 10TB, you’ll have to sign up for Tencent QQ and download the latest version of the Tencent Cloud (Weiyun) mobile app. Once you’ve done that, you should immediately receive 1TB worth of free storage. As you deplete the space, Tencent will top it up.

With the offer, Tencent could potentially grab itself a handsome slice of the English-speaking cloud storage market. Ten terabytes is, after all, a lot more than is currently being offered by the likes of DropBox, Box and Microsoft.

In a bid to allay fears around the Chinese government spying on the data stored on its cloud offering, Tencent will most likely use servers outside of China, much as it does with its mobile messaging service WeChat.

According to PandoDaily, Peter Zheng — vice president of Tencent’s social network group — at the same time announced that it would be taking its Instagram-like photo app Story Camera global within the next two to three weeks, starting with the US.

While Story Camera allows you to filter photos, it also has a couple of other, more contextual features. Alongside the photo, for instance, you can overlay information including weather, date, noise levels at that location, or the air pollution index.

It also includes facial recognition technology, which allows the app to rate people on handsomeness or beauty. As PandoDaily notes, the feature is a popular one, but is unlikely to go down very well in the West.

The move to push more of its products outside of China, will likely see Tencent’s stock take another bump, having already passed Facebook on the basis of Market Cap.

While that might be good news for shareholders, the company will have to work its butt off to ensure it stays that way, especially given that its chairman Pony Ma recently announced that the stock price was “too high and too scary”.



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