By Jayanta Ghosh
UCWeb is a globally used web browser on mobile platforms with unique features. Kenny Ye, General Manager & Director International Business Development, UCWeb India, shares his views and outlook for UC Browser in an interaction with Mobility magazine.
Tell us about new development and features in UC Browser.
UC Browser is a mobile browser developed by UCWeb Inc. with features meticulously curated for faster mobile Internet experience. Its key features include fast browsing, localized content and services (for Indian users), smart downloading (supporting multi-tasking, background and cloud downloading with auto reconnection), customized UI, speed dial, incognito browsing and speed mode among others. UC Browser also features a unique Add-on Platform where the user can find various add-ons that enhance and personalize their browsing experience.
What is your overall market share In India and globally?
UC Browser is available in 150 countries and across all major mobile platforms. With over 35% market share according to Stat Counter, UC Browser is the most popular mobile browser in India. It is also the leading mobile browser in China with over 65% of the market share and has also witnessed strong growth in many other countries.
Which part of India have you seen maximum downloads and usage of UC browser and why?
UC Browser is the most popular mobile browser in India and has users from all across the country. Some of the bigger states such as Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu have witnessed a the maximum number of downloads and active user base. Having said that, we have a substantial user base in other states as well.
What makes your browser unique from other web browsers?
UC Browser was the first mobile browser to introduce cloud computing technology back in the year 2004. With more people accessing Internet on their mobile phones for the first time, we have developed a very easy-to-use navigation and home page which is a unique initiative. Distinctive features like speed mode, background download, download manager and multiple add-ons distinguish UC Browser from other products in the market.
We have also pioneered to give the users a fast browsing speed on social networks and currently our Android Browser loads Facebook faster than any other mobile browser. We also cater to local user demands by providing up-to-date services. For example, we teamed up with local content service providers to provide numerous Bollywood movies with copyrights to Indian users. Users can also check their PNR status directly from UC Browser. That’s something our peers do not provide.
What are the new trends you are expecting in this segment in near future?
In India, we are seeing m-commerce growth taking place at a fast pace. India is a mobile-first market and most of the Internet population accesses it for the first time using their mobile phones. This is especially the case in lower-tier cities and rural areas. Therefore the e-commerce market is expected to get an impressive growth through mobile phones. M-commerce is taking off in India and UC Web is accelerating the growth in this area.
Do you have any new tie-ups with mobile manufacturers (Indian or foreign)?
UC Browser comes preloaded on Gionee handsets currently. We are in discussions with other handset manufacturers and once something finalizes, we will announce the same.
Which Indian mobile handset brand do you prefer? Which brand do you feel will make it big in next few years?
The mobile handset market in India is currently buzzing with options and it is difficult to predict who will come out on top in coming years. With several new entrants, many already established global mobile giants and some existing home-grown companies everyone making their own efforts in the market, it is difficult for a single player to remain on top for a long period of time. We as a mobile Internet company will continue to provide users in India with relevant and localized content and services.