Seven years after its launch, WeChat now has more than one billion monthly active users (MAUs) - a significant milestone for the multi-purpose social media service provider.
Ma Huateng, founder and chairman of WeChat developer Tencent, said that the one-billion mark was passed during the Chinese Lunar New Year period and that "the achievement is really remarkable", ifeng reports.
Ma revealed the figure on Monday morning while meeting the media ahead of the National People's Congress' (NPC) annual session. Ma is both China's richest man and a deputy at the NPC, China's top legislative body.
Detailed user numbers are expected to be released in late March, when Tencent publishes its 2017 Q4 and annual financial reports. According to the Shenzhen-based tech giant's Q3 report, WeChat had 980 million MAUs at that point - an increase of nearly 16 percent compared to the same period in 2016.
This rapid growth is mainly thanks to the fact that the app is far more than a just social media platform. Users can hail a taxi, pay for food and even apply for an electronic identity card through WeChat. Its 'Jump, Jump' game had attracted more than 100 million daily active users as of January 2018, just two weeks after launching.
In comparison, US social media giant Facebook hit one billion MAUs in 2012, eight years after it was launched. Five years later, in June 2017, it passed the two-billion milestone.