WeChat: what it is and how it works

Among the many existing messaging services, you will surely have heard of WeChat, a Chinese platform founded in 2011 with over 1 billion active users, now widespread throughout the world. In this article we will see in detail, what WeChat is, how it works and how to use it, showcasing all the features that make this app one of the most used, particularly in the Far East.

WeChat: Quick article index

What is WeChat

Initially created as an instant messaging application (to be clear as Whatsapp and Telegram) it can be used not only on your smartphone, but also on a computer via its client or from a browser, via its website. Wechat in China is known as 微信, pronounced Wēixìn, which literally means “micromessages”. This platform was developed by the Tencent company.

Its spread, especially in eastern countries, received a huge boost especially following the Chinese government's blocking of Whatsapp and other social media.

WeChat Download dell’app Android e iOS

Let's now see where to download the application, which we remind you is free and in Spanish. For Android and iOS smartphones and tablets, we can download the application from the links below:

DOWNLOAD | WeChat (Android)


WeChat: what it is and how it works

Wechat Web how to use it

For owners of a computer, we can use the dedicated web page, via any browser, reachable at this web address:

LINK | WeChatWeb

You will simply have to open the page, then open the app on your device and from the "Options" menu and use the "WeChat for Web" item to open the rear camera and photograph the QR code on the web page;

How to install Wechat on PC

As an alternative to the web version, on your computer you can download and use the official software that can be downloaded from the following links:

DOWNLOAD | WeChat (Windows)

DOWNLOAD | WeChat (Mac)

Once you have downloaded the software, open the installation package and follow the wizard to complete everything. Now all you have to do is launch the WeChat client and access your profile by scanning the QR code that appears on your screen, via the WeChat function on your smartphone.

How WeChat works

Over the years, Wechat has become something much more complete than a simple messaging app, evolving into a real platform, with many functions and features, among which the possibility of:

  • make voice and video calls;
  • exchange photos and share them, like a sort of social network;
  • send audio messages and text messages;
  • meet new people nearby or in your city, via the Shake function (Tinder and Chatroulette style);
  • How to payment system (Wechat Pay)
  • allows you to create live voice chats, where you can only exchange voice notes;
  • Buy plane and train tickets;
  • Call a cab (simile a Uber);
  • Ordering food (come Just Eat);
  • Pay a bill;
  • Buy a movie ticket;
  • Top up your mobile phone credit;
  • Make a doctor's appointment;
  • Group chat;
  • Editing of the shots taken.

This platform, thanks to its enormous amount of functionality, has now become indispensable in China, practically replacing in Eastern countries: Facebook, Amazon, Uber, Just Eat, Skype, Paypal, Whatsapp.

How to use WeChat

To use this platform, we must first sign up and create an account. Registration can be done via Facebook or mobile number.

WeChat: what it is and how it works

You can choose the method you prefer. At the end of the procedure, once the verification code has been passed, the application will ask us for permission to import the phone book on our smartphone, this is to inform us if among our contacts there is already someone who uses the application.

As mentioned before, WeChat can be used not only on smartphones and tablets but also on PCs (Windows and Mac) via a web page/interface or via a program that you can install for free, all you have to do is use the same phone number that you have paired in the WeChat app for Android and for iOS (the control code will be sent to you via SMS).

How to add contacts in WeChat

As previously illustrated, the simplest method to add contacts in WeChat is to import the phone book on your smartphone, so that all the friends who already use the app are automatically shown to you.

Another method, however manual, consists in clicking on the "+" button at the top right and selecting the item "Add contacts", or by clicking on "Add contacts" you can type the ID in the search field WeChat of the person we want to add (which does not match their name or email address). We can, always from the same field, search among the official accounts of this platform.

A final way to add contacts is by scanning the QR Code associated with each user. For example, your QR Code can be found in the "Me" tab, by clicking on the QR code thumbnail, or you can find people nearby by going to the "Discover" tab via the "People nearby" function.

To prevent being found via this function, click on the "three dots" at the top right and click on the "Delete location" item.

WeChat: what it is and how it works
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