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WeChat Messaging Numbers Double on the Eve of the Chinese New Year

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The number of messages sent through the Chinese messaging platform, WeChat doubled on Thursday, the eve of the Spring Festival, when Chinese sent wishes for the new lunar year.

In the peak minute, the number of messages carrying best wishes for the "Year of the Horse" in the Chinese Zodiac, surged to 10 million, according to data released on Sunday by Tencent, developer of WeChat.

Chinese people used to send greetings on the eve via text message services provided by the country's three state-owned telecom giants, the cost of which roughly stood at 0.1 yuan (about 1.64 cents) per message.

The trend began to reverse after WeChat brought free message and voice services to mobile users who only need to pay for their mobile data allowance.

Last year, text messages sent on the eve through services of China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom totaled 13.3 billion, up 11 percent year on year. This year's figure has yet to be released.

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Tags: wechat  tencent  China