The Korea Herald


Kakao prepares to launch news service on mobile messenger

By 김영원

Published : Aug. 12, 2016 - 17:16

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[THE INVESTOR] Kakao, operator of South Korea’s top mobile messenger KakaoTalk, is preparing to launch a new mobile news messaging service called News Talk by the end of this year, local reports said Aug. 12.

News Talk is slated to be offered as one of KakaoTalk’s so-called Plus Friends -- a newsletter service for companies and brands from various industries that are partnered with Kakao.

KakaoTalk users will reportedly be able to receive diverse news stories and informational content curated by Kakao via the mobile messenger after adding News Talk to the list of their friends on the mobile messenger.

Kakao is said to have been testing out the news service since last month in partnership with local news companies such as Yonhap News Agency and the Joongang Ilbo as well as non-media companies, according to local sources.

News Talk is expected to shake up the way that most Koreans consume news today -- by visiting the news tab, entering a query on Korea’s top internet portal Naver or directly visiting a news company’s website.

Leveraging the dominant market position of KakaoTalk which boasts some 40 million monthly active users, Kakao has potential to shift the paradigm of the Korean online news industry, an industry watcher said.

By Kim Young-won (