Apps I Downloaded in China

It’s April 1, which means it’s April Fools and I have spent a month in China (I can probably say that I’m officially moving to China and you won’t believe me. I’m not, so far).

China and its technology always gave me a Black Mirror vibe and I was quite excited to be immersed in it all. Here are just some of the apps that I downloaded while I’m here.

First of all, when as soon as I arrived, my sister helped me set up a Sim Card with mobile data, and set up my WeChat with Wallet.

🙊 Actually, before everything, before even flying to China, you should already have VPN downloaded and setup. I actually just use it for social media, YouTube and Google. 🙊

Okay, I’ll go through the rest of the apps.

1. WeChat

This one needs no introduction. It started as a Chat app but it evolved into way more.

WeChat and its competitor, Alipay, are China’s answer to paywave and contactless payments. All you need is your phone. Most online and brick-and-mortar stores (inside Disneyland included) accepts it. All you need to do is click the Money button and it will generate a QR code and a barcode. Or you can also scan someone else’s barcode to pay them (gashapon vendo machines included).

It also changed the way you can order food at restaurants.

This is a restaurant (Kwei Mun Lung, and you can eat in the fake boats).
On your table is a QR code that you can scan for the menu and order food.
Everyone can scan with their own phones and it will just make one order list.
And that’s it. You get your food.
After you’re done eating, you can pay for it with WeChat.

That’s it! Super easy barely any inconveniece.


2. 饿了吗

This translates to: “Are you hungry”, and its one of China’s answer to Deliveroo and UberEats. You can order food, groceries, anything.


The next few apps, Taobao (China’s Amazon, literally sells everything), Didi (China’s Uber), Baidu (China’s Google, actually Sogou is also another Google) and Baidu Maps don’t need any explanations.


3. 大众点评

Disclaimer: I have not fully explored this app. There is a lot going on.

It’s a bit like TimeOut, you can look for things to do, restaurants, movies and such, around you. You can write and read other people’s reviews (which is what the name of the app literally translates to).

You can also buy tickets directly from the app. This is where I bought my Yayoi Kusama and teamLab tickets (paid with WeChat of course).

Read about my blog about those exhibits:

https://purplelilgirl.com/2019/03/28/visiting-exhibits-in-shanghai-yayoi-kusama-and-teamlab/


The next app Pleco is kind of like a Chinese dictionary and doesn’t need any more explanation.


4. AirVisual

Okay, so far I like living in Shanghai, I like the transportation, the apps, the mixture of old buildings and really modern skyscrapers.

But the deal breaker for me is the air quality, as visualized by this app.

Yes, I try to wear a face mask when I go out, but it’s not too comfy.

And lastly, the Shanghai Disneyland app, because of course I had to visit the happiest place on earth.

View this post on Instagram

Happiest Place on Earth

A post shared by Michelle Chen (@itsmichellechen) on


That’s it for me. What other apps should I download?

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