Viber has been taking care of loyal customers, while LINE has set up an office and plans a return to Vietnam.
Grab is striving to become a ‘super app’ which not only allows users to hail taxis, but also makes payments and has other services. Zalo, a messaging app, has developed e-wallet, while Foody’s Now is planning to jump into the passenger transport market.
The race of the apps has raised questions about the fates of Viber and LINE, two apps familiar to nearly all Vietnamese before 2015. Viber once held 60 percent of market shares with 63 million users.
Their names have been less mentioned recently as more apps have appeared in Vietnam.
However, analysts believe that the ‘big guys’ won’t miss the Vietnamese market, the third largest populous market in Southeast Asia, which is the destination for many apps.
Viber recently has updated enhancements to help users improve their experience. The message transfer speed has increased by two times, while the interface for text and image display has been improved.
It has also declared end-to-end message content encryption, affirming that the content is secured by a third party and Viber itself cannot read the users’ messages.
Viber is considered less known than Messenger and WhatsApp. However, recent reports show that the number of Viber users has been increasing steadily in many areas in the world.
Analysts commented that with the updates, Viber focuses on taking care of loyal clients who use Viber as a messaging app, rather than thinking of developing new services.
Also from Japan, LINE is making heavier investments than Viber in Vietnam. LINE Vietnam’s headquarters is in HCMC which is built as a LINE global product development center (Tech Hub). The task of the center is attracting IT talents to build new strategic products.
Just days ago, LINE held a meeting with 50 IT developers in HCMC and it plans to organize four more events by the end of the year.
Luu Quynh Anh from LINE said the company plans to employ 60 more workers next year. LINE is not only a messaging app, but it also has many other products including LINE Today, Blockchain, LINE Pay, B612, LINE LIVE, Live Quiz Show and Games.
“In Vietnam, we are still learning users’ responses to improve the messaging app to serve Vietnamese in the best way,” Anh said.
However, Anh revealed that the messaging app is not the top priority for LINE when approaching Vietnamese users. LINE is preparing for a news website specifically developed by the company for the Vietnamese market.
According to a report on Vietnamnet