A senior Tencent executive said on Monday that the reward function on its popular instant messaging app WeChat will be restored on Apple's iPhone iOS system soon, domestic news site sina.com.cn reported Monday.
WeChat closed the function to reward its public account articles in April 2017 via Apple's iOS system, as it had broken Apple's rules by directing customers to pay inside the WeChat app rather than through Apple's app payment system.
WeChat can adopt Apple's original payment system for its public account operators, Apple said in April.
"The red envelope function and reward function have Chinese characteristics, which Apple might find hard to comprehend," Zhang Xiaolong, senior executive vice president of Tencent, was quoted as saying in the report. Zhang is dubbed the "father of WeChat," which boasted 980 million users as of November 2017.
However, the ban by Apple urged WeChat to rethink the feature, as to whether the reward should be given to the public account operator or to authors of specific articles, Zhang said in an online class.
In the future, the reward will be given to the author directly, with a list of the author's previous articles, Zhang said.
Zhang also revealed that WeChat is working on a standalone app for public accounts, which may be released shortly.
On users' concerns over privacy, Zhang reiterated that WeChat does not view users' chat logs. "This has always been the case [not viewing the logs] since the first day of WeChat," he said.
"Since the early days of developing WeChat, I was advised that it is best for WeChat not to store users' chat logs from a security point of view," Zhang noted.
Although the SSL encryption technology technically allows the server operator to view such information, we choose not to do so, Zhang said.