Areas of Consumer Technology Where China Leads Innovations vs U.S.

Howard Xu
1 min readAug 20, 2018


New Retail

  • Online to offline and back to online
  • Mobile payment enabling analysis on buyer’s online data in offline purchases

Alibaba enabling convenient stores in China

  • More than 6 million convenient stores
  • 40x of number of 711 and gas stations in the US
  • Collecting data and insights on consumer behavior
  • Make the connection across payment, delivery, logistics, purchase, financing, online and offline


  • Alibaba Hema fulfillment center for deliveries
  • 30 min delivery for everything
  • Coffee, grocery, everything delivered

Shared Economy

  • Shared bikes
  • Shared chargers
  • Shared kiosks for food in office and stores
  • Shared karaoke


  • Mobile payment
  • 656M smartphone users — from cheap smartphones & smartphone plans
  • Bike sharing
  • Mobile games as social
  • Mobile menu and ordering in restaurants


  • Short video
  • Streaming
  • Online celebrity economy
  • Paid knowledge — 得到

Everything moves 2–3 times faster in China

  • Leapfrogging
  • Population density and attitude to technology
  • Mobile internet adoption — cheap smartphones and cheap smartphone plans
  • Demographic — more saving and shifting to more spending