In 2015, there was a wave of social product start-ups in China. Many entrepreneurs shared their insights on the next-gen social network and innovated in products. However, in 2022, most of these start-ups and products have already disappeared. Some survived. Only a few gained huge popularity in China. Soul App is one of the most successful products. Analyzing its success, the industry insiders believe that Soul Metaverse, a social metaverse concept brought by Soul App, is the cornerstone of its success. Next-Gen Social Network-
The majority of Soul App users are young people, the Gen Z. Soul App has captured their deep social needs and provided a relatively ideal and real communication platform. According to Market Research on the Social Needs of Gen Z, the average number of children born by Chinese urban families in 2020 was 0.94, significantly lower than 1.55 in 1990. In addition, the post-2000s spend three times as much time in extracurricular classes as the post-90s do on average. Their heavy study tasks lead to a stronger sense of loneliness and a stronger need for social contact.
Except for strong social needs, Gen Z also shows distinctive social pursuits and characteristics. On the one hand, being more expressive, Gen Z loves original content and discussion. On the other hand, the social appeal of Gen Z is to meet more friends through online communication, and to form a social circle with people having the same hobbies, interests and views.
Traditional social products either directly reflect user’s acquaintances in the real world, or cannot escape the logic of hormonal economy. They are hard to meet Gen Z’s deep social needs. They even bring users great social pressure and become hinders for Gen Z to express their true feelings.
When Soul App appears, it provides a totally different online social playground, a fresh Social Metaverse. It generates interest graphs for each user and travels them to different “planets” based on their passions to connect with other like-minded users. It accurately recommends to each user curated content and other users with similar personalities, lifestyles and interests, enabling more in-depth interactions and more meaningful connections.
To help users destroy loneliness, Soul App creates an engaging and immersive environment to streamline and encourage user interaction. Users are also able to bond with each other through co-experiencing an array of gamified features across many scenarios and media formats, such as Soul’s extensive lens filter library, Soul Pets and Animated Party Rooms.
As a result, a large group of Gen Z love the warm ecology on Soul Metaverse and become Soul App’s heavy users. According to data from Soul App, till March 2021, this app had 9.1 million daily active users, who spent an average of 40 minutes per day on it.
How will the next-gen network be? Only time can tell. In the future, we may see more diverse products with strong VR, AR, AI and other cutting-edge technologies. But currently, Soul Metaverse definitely provides a good answer, one that millions of Chinese young people agree with.