Momo (software)

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Momo (Chinese: 陌陌; pinyin: mò mò) is a free location-based services instant messaging application for smartphones for chatting up nearby strangers. Momo provides free text messaging services. In addition, users can also send each other images, location information, and audio media messages. The client software is available for both Android[1] and iOS.[2][3] The company by the same name was founded in March 2011 by Tang Yan, Zhang Sichuan, Lei Xiaoliang and Li Zhiwei, most of whom are veterans of NetEase, and is based in Beijing, China.[4]

Momo was initially launched in China in August 2011. Its international version was launched in October 2012 but so far has only been available for iOS. [3]

Both one-on-one chat and group chats on Momo are available over Wifi or 3G. There are still, however, limits to the number of friends and the number of users to join in group chat.[5][6] At present moment, the English version of Momo only supports one-on-one chat.


Founding and incorporation[edit]

Momo was initially released in August 2011 by Beijing Momo Technology Company, which was founded in March 2011 by Tang Yan, Zhang Sichuan, Lei Xiaoliang and Li Zhiwei. Most of the co-founders are veterans of Netease and Sina Corp, two largest portal sites in China. Tang Yan, Ex-Chief Editor of NetEase, is CEO of Momo.[7][4]


In December 2011, Momo announced surpassing half a million users.[8] Three months later, the number of Momo users reached 2 million.[9] It hit 10 million users on its first anniversary in August 2012, which seems it's picking up new signups at the rate of over one million per month.[10] In October 2012, the number of Momo's register users has surpassed 15 million. At the same time, Momo began to eye overseas markets and released its English version. [11] On December 4 2012, the number of Momo users reached 20 million.[12]


Momo's first round was worth US$10million and was led by Buttonwood Capital and Matrix Partners.[13] It completed its Series B financing in October 2012. This round of financing was led by two institution investors and received $100 million valuation. China Renaissance Partners acted as the exclusive financial advisor. [14] Rumors suggested that Momo had raised $40 million in series B funding and Alibaba Group had been involved. However, neither Momo nor Alibaba Group responded to this. [15]

Product and services[edit]

Until January 2013, Momo has been available in both Chinese and English. However, Momo's English version is only available for iOS and provides only one-on-one chat, while the Chinese version has more features, such as group chats and places of interest.[3]

Corporate affairs and cultures[edit]


In December 2012, Momo made an official announcement to accuse Sina Corp of copycatting straight from all the features of Momo Group. However, Sina Corp did not give its formal response.

Public opinions[edit]

Mike Sui's video[edit]

On April 27 2012, Mike Sui, a mixed-race comedian and performer in China, first posted his "12 Beijingers"[16] viral video which attracted nearly 5.17 million hits. In this video, one character mentions Momo, for the first time calling it a magical tool to get laid (Chinese: 约炮神器; pinyin: yuē páo shén qì ).[17] Since then, Momo became synonymous with adult social networking.

A new way to build a serious relationship[edit]

Although Momo is widely considered as adult social application, there are couples claiming that meetings on Momo resulted in marriage.[18][19]


  1. ^ "Momo for Android". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  2. ^ "Momo for iOS in Chinese". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c "Momo for iOS in English". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  4. ^ a b "About Momo". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  5. ^ "Limits to the number of Momo friends". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  6. ^ "Limits to the number of users to join in group chat". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  7. ^ "China’s instant message app eyes overseas markets". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  8. ^ Chiang, Ben. "Mobile Social App Momo Surpasses Half a Million Users, Coming to Android". TechNode. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  9. ^ Millward, Steven. "Momo App Reaches 2 Million Flirty Users, Says Some of its Couples Have Married". Tech In Asia. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  10. ^ Millward, Steven. "Momo App Hits 10 Million Users, A Whole Lot of Flirting Going On". Tech In Asia. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  11. ^ Su, Zhou. "China’s instant message app eyes overseas markets". China Daily. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  12. ^ Millward, Steven. "China’s Momo App Chats Up 20 Million Users, Also Sees Traction in the US". Tech In Asia. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  13. ^ "Social Networking App Momo Said to Close 2nd-round Financing". Contact Center Solutions Industry News. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  14. ^ "Momo Technology Completed its Series B Financing; China Renaissance Partners Acted as the Exclusive Financial Advisor". China Renaissance. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  15. ^ Wee, Willis. "Momo App Receives $40 Million in Funding, Is Alibaba Involved?". Tech In Asia. 
  16. ^ Sui, Mike. "12 Beijingers". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  17. ^ Lin, Xu. "First Impressions Count". China Daily. Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  18. ^ "Met on Momo and resulted in marriage". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 
  19. ^ "Met on Momo and resulted in marriage". Retrieved 25 January 2013. 

External links[edit]

Official website