Transsion Holdings, a Chinese company which is one of the leading mobile phone manufacturers doing business in Africa, has partnered with China Literature, a Chinese online literature platform, to have the China Literature app installed on all its mobile phones sold in Africa. According to the companies, the literature content to be initially distributed across Africa on Transsion made mobile devices will be in English and consists of approximately 30,000 literary works from China Literature's existing portfolio.

Transsion, whose mobile phone brands are most popular in West, East and parts of North Africa, makes three brands of mobile devices: namely TECNO, itel and Infinix.

"The circulation of digital reading in Africa is still in its early days and presents huge opportunities compared to mature markets like Europe, United States and China. Being in Africa for some time now, we noticed the increasing demand for online reading content from our African mobile users. By combining our strong distribution channels with the competitive advantage of China Literature in content and operations, we look forward to enriching the lives of our African consumers with high-quality literary content for years to come."

Transsion moving into digital media

The partnership with China Literature is not Transsion's first move into the digital media space in Africa. Through BoomPlay, a music streaming app co-owned by Transsion and NetEase, the Chines mobile device manufacturer has also entered the digital music sector by having the app pre-installed on mobile devices it sells in Africa. So far, the company has reported that BoomPlay is the largest music streaming app in Africa with 46 million users, however, it still needs to be clarified whether this number is actual paying users or just a count of mobile phones sold with BoomPlay pre-installed, as will be the case with China Literature.

This highlights the importance of Transsion's distribution reach as it could, in the near future, continue expanding into more digital media areas as it already has a captive audience of users through the devices it sells.

In 2018, Transsion teported that it sold 124 million mobile phones globally. According to IDC figures, Transsion held the largest market share in Africa in 2018.

Online reading in Africa

China Literature owns nine branded products. Among these, QQ Reading, a unified mobile content aggregation and distribution platform, is the flagship product.

China Literature's shareholder and strategic partner, Tencent, provides the online content company with exclusive content distribution access via its suite of mobile and Internet products, including Mobile QQ, QQ Browser, Tencent News, Weixin Reading and Tencent Video. It also has distribution beyond the Tencent platforms by pre-installing apps on handsets partners such as OPPO, Huawei and VIVO, as well as licensing content to third-party partners such as Baidu, Sogou, JD.com and Xiaomi Duokan.

"We are pleased to work with Transsion to provide African users with access to our comprehensive library of literature works and help foster new original content in Africa," stated China Literature. "Leveraging Transsion's extensive distribution network and strong market position in Africa, the cooperation will allow us to benefit from the enormous opportunities for online reading in Africa. This is an important step for China Literature to expand our mobile readership base internationally and unleash value from our intellectual properties on a global scale."

China Literature monetizes its vast and proprietary content library through online paid reading and content adaptations for a variety of entertainment formats.

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