ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon Twitter
Media & Entertainment

Virtual hosts take China livestream spotlight amid crackdown

Influencers’ tax troubles open door for automated substitutes

Startup Deep Science last year raised 100 million yuan as it pivoted into virtual livestreaming. (Image courtesy Deep Science)

HONG KONG -- It is well past midnight, but sales are still in full swing on a Chinese e-commerce platform as a virtual host peddles cosmetics and skin care products at rock-bottom prices.

Groggy viewers ask about a bottle of scented body lotion on offer for 69 yuan ($11). But they don't have much luck getting answers; the auburn-haired avatar's sales pitch just repeats itself on a preprogrammed loop.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

Nikkei Asian Review, now known as Nikkei Asia, will be the voice of the Asian Century.

Celebrate our next chapter
Free access for everyone - Sep. 30

Find out more