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Tencent is first Asian company to top US$500 billion

• nextbigfuture.com by brian wang

The Shenzhen-based company reported third quarter net income rose 69 per cent on year, beating market estimates.

Earnings were boosted by its smartphone games unit, including Honour of Kings, the fantasy role-playing "multiplayer online battle arena" game, and its efforts to derive more advertising revenue from its video streaming platform and WeChat messaging app.

Wechat's user base reached 980 million at the end of September, helping drive the company's digital content business.

Recruited to China's National AI team

China's Ministry of Science and Technology identified internet giants Baidu, Alibaba Group and Tencent Holdings – collectively known as BAT – and voice intelligence specialist iFlyTek, as the first group to spur development of next generation AI technologies that are vital to everything from voice activated digital assistants to self-driving cars.

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