Rita Liao

Rita covers China for TechCrunch, with a special interest in the relationship between humans and technology.

Before her previous writing stints with Tech in Asia and TechNode, she managed communications for SOSV’s accelerators in Asia. At one point, she worked for a documentary production company and a mindfulness retreat center in New England.

She studied political science and arts at Bowdoin College and is now back in her hometown Shenzhen.

Contact: ritaliao@pm.me

Disclosures: None

The Latest from Rita Liao

How ByteDance plans to crack the gaming industry

For the last few years, ByteDance, the parent company of short video app TikTok, has been working to diversify its revenue streams beyond advertisement and find more ways to monetize its hundreds of m

Hong Kong fintech unicorn WeLab raises $75M led by insurance giant Allianz

One of the few industries that have benefited from the COVID-19 crisis is online finance. Around the world, the pandemic has forced consumers to adopt digital banking. Hong Kong’s WeLab, a finte

Chinese beauty app Meitu bought $40 million worth of cryptocurrency

Following in the footsteps of Tesla, Chinese app maker Meitu has joined the ranks of cryptocurrency investment. In the early 2010s, Meitu reached such dominance in the portrait touch-up space that its

What China’s Big Tech CEOs propose at the annual parliament meeting

The annual meetings of the Chinese parliament and its advisory body are underway in Beijing this week. Top executives from some of China’s largest tech firms are among the thousands of delegates

Boss of Chinese gaming titan NetEase calls for shared parental leave

China’s relaxation of its one-child restriction has not delivered the population targets set by its policy planners. In 2019, the birth rate in China slumped to a seven-decade low, which experts

China’s cosmetics startup Yatsen to buy 35-year-old skincare brand Eve Lom

In China’s cosmetics world, where foreign brands were historically revered, indigenous startups are increasingly winning over Gen Z consumers with cheaper, more localized options. One of the ris

How China’s synthetic media startup Surreal nabs funding in 3 months

What if we no longer needed cameras to make videos and can instead generate them through a few lines of coding? Advances in machine learning are turning the idea into a reality. We’ve seen how d

Qualcomm veteran to replace Alain Crozier as Microsoft Greater China boss

Microsoft is getting a new leader for its Greater China business. Yang Hou, a former senior vice president at Qualcomm, will take over for Alain Crozier as the chairman and chief executive officer for

Tim Hortons marks two years in China with Tencent investment

Tim Hortons, the Canadian coffee and doughnut giant, has raised a new round of funding for its Chinese venture. The investment is led by Sequoia China with participation from Tencent, its digital part

Xiaomi further localizes India supply chain via BYD, DBG partnerships

China’s Xiaomi had dominated the Indian smartphone market for three consecutive years until recently losing the top spot to Samsung. It has played by the Indian government’s rulebook to su

Chinese mobile games are gaining ground in the US

Over the past year, the coronavirus crisis has spurred app usage in the United States as people stay indoors to limit contact with others. Mobile games particularly have enjoyed a boom, and among them

A race to reverse-engineer Clubhouse raises security concerns

As live audio chat app Clubhouse ascends in popularity around the world, concerns about its data practices also grow. The app is currently only available on iOS, so some developers set out in a race t

China’s Black Lake raises $77M to give factories a digital upgrade

Zhou Yuxiang doesn’t have the typical profile for working in China’s manufacturing world. A soft-spoken yet incisive person in his early thirties, Zhou graduated from Dartmouth College wit

TikTok’s China twin Douyin has 550 million search users, takes on Baidu

The advance of short videos is reshaping how information is created, disseminated and consumed online. Snappy 15-second videos aren’t just for entertainment. On Chinese short-video apps Douyin a

Tesla summoned by Chinese regulators for quality concerns

Tesla, which is seeing rapid growth in China as it ramps up local manufacturing capacity, has been called upon by the Chinese government for talks over quality issues in its electric cars. A group of

Clubhouse is now blocked in China after a brief uncensored period

Thousands of Chinese users suddenly found themselves unable to access Clubhouse on early Monday evening as the country prepared to start the week-long Lunar New Year holiday. Inside WeChat groups, Clu

China court accepts ByteDance case filing against Tencent over alleged monopoly

ByteDance is bringing its battle with archrival Tencent to the court at a time when the Chinese government moves to curve the power of the country’s internet behemoths. The Beijing Intellectual

Will the Clubhouse model work in China?

On Friday just past midnight, I stumbled across a Clubhouse room hosted by a well-known figure in the Chinese startup community, Feng Dahui. At half-past midnight, the room still had nearly 500 listen

Kuaishou, TikTok’s Chinese nemesis, surges 194% on IPO debut

Kuaishou, a Chinese video app that’s largely underappreciated outside China, has just completed a massive initial public offering in Hong Kong. The app is by far the biggest rival for Douyin, Ti

China’s national blockchain network embraces global developers

While China bans cryptocurrency exchanges and initial coin offerings, the government is set to leverage the underpinning technology — often without the decentralized part. Blockchain, for instan
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