Chinese tech giant Tencent has chosen the 10th anniversary of the unveiling of the iPhone to launch a rival to Apple’s App Store. WeChat today started offering “miniprograms” within the app from third-party developers. Users can now book a shared ride with Didi, order a gift from JD.com, or rent a bicycle from Mobike – and use over 100 other “apps within the app” – without leaving the WeChat platform. The new miniprogram function makes WeChat the first big platform to provide an alternative to the App Store from Apple, according to the Financial Times. The platform adds to the list of threats that Apple is facing in China. Its profits in the region fell a fifth in the year to September 2016, and last week it buckled to Chinese government pressure to remove the New York Times app.
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