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Bytedance Reportedly to Launch its Own Smartphone and OS
COVID-19 and China
Students from UK join an event organized by TikTok. Photo: Credit to Bytedance Linkedin page

"ByteDance is taking a step into hardware to develop its smartphone," Finacial Times speculated on May 27. While Bytedance has not yet denied or commented on the news, Chinese media has further speculated the issue, confirming the rumours. 

Bytedance acquired Smartisan Technology, a Chinese company that designs and markets consumer electronic devices and online services including smartphones and OS. Wall Street China speculated that Bytedance has already started the process and the smartphone may be released in the second half of this year. 

In January 2019, Bytedance signed a service agreement with some the employees of Smartisan Technology, including hardware and software engineers. Meanwhile, Bytedance has acquired part of the patent rights of Smartisan Technology. So far, Bytedance has indicated that those patents are used to “explore” related businesses. 

Bytedance presumably one of the most successful "Made in China" IT companies. Wirth around USD 75 billion valuations, it is the world's biggest start-up. 

TikTok, the company's flagship product's technology is driven by machine learning, and the company is aggressively expanding its short video empire's footprint. 

In 2012, Zhang Yiming (张一鸣) - Bytedance's iconic founder - found that there are massive databases on the Internet, however, users cannot find what they are interested in. He believed that the Internet should be smart enough to recommend and introduce the related content to the users. This determination created Bytedance. Toutiao ( 今日头条 ) - another major product of Bytedance - was a new app inspired by the personal recommendation system. (Find more on the story of Bytedance)

"Bytedance is a unqiue case: They have decided the company's English name on the first day that  Zhang Yiming and friends shaped the business. Since then, their vision is to conquer overseas," said Yuanpu Huang ( 黄渊普 ), the Founder of EqualOcean and an eminent researcher.

Bytedance is full of confidence in its global expansion. The company can quickly market its smartphone and OS upon its already existed hundreds of millions of teenager and children users ecosystem, addressing an unmet need in the market. 

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