Emma Lee on TechNode:

Monthly active users (MAU) for Wechat mini programs reached 829 million in June, up 11.6% year on year compared with 743 million a year ago, according to a Quest Mobile report published on Tuesday.

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Mini programs offer a lightweight, convenient way to try out a limited version of a service, and are a crucial channel for apps to acquire new users who want to use the full range of services, the report said.

Beyond user acquisition, mini programs are key to providing users with practical functions without having to download a full app. When they download a full app, they need to first register for an account before they can use just a few functions. With mini programs, they can log in using their WeChat account and access the function right from the app they are in.

Ecommerce apps are using mini programs for stores, giving the vendors a place to customise the user experience when in the store. Likewise, service apps such as food delivery services and crowd-sourced review platforms are using mini programs as business pages that vendors can customise.