Kuaishou has chosen a “smart” time for Zynn’s debut, with many young people stuck at home because of COVID-19, and with the summer holidays approaching, said Man-Chung Cheung, an analyst at Insider Intelligence.
But in the long run, retaining users will depend on Zynn’s “ability to attract top content creators, talent and brands to share videos”, Cheung told AFP.
Kuaishou will also have to contend with rising China-US tensions, which have already put rival TikTok and other Chinese tech companies under increased scrutiny from the US government.
US officials have warned that TikTok, which has denied any ties with the Chinese government, could become another tool exploited by Chinese intelligence services.
Zynn has sought to downplay its Chinese origins, with its website offering little information about its background and giving an address in Palo Alto, California.
Zynn spokesman Rocky Zhang confirmed that Kuaishou is behind the upstart app.
“Zynn is a product only for the US, and we launched Zynn for the US,” he told AFP.
Zhang said Zynn plans to continue paying users in the long term, but will shift towards rewarding “content creators” in the future, while generating revenue through advertising.