Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

China's tech giants have invested aggressively to expand esports in ways that U.S. tech platforms, like Amazon's Twitch and Google's YouTube, have not.

Why it matters: Those investments are what could drive the Chinese gaming community ahead of some international rivals, despite being smaller in reported revenue.. for now. (The Chinese esports market is expected to double to $1.5 billion by 2020.)

Be smart: Chinese tech giants bill the majority of its revenue as "value-added services" (like free games and chat features), not ad revenue.

  • Even though this is done mostly to avoid regulatory scrutiny around mobile gaming, it incentivizes those firms to grow broader cultures and lifestyles that bolster esports engagement beyond video views.

The big picture: Alibaba and Tencent use unparalleled reach across e-commerce, logistics, entertainment and tech to change the way its users consume, interact with and participate in sports.

  • This allows them to collect an enormous amount of user data to use for cross-platform promotions for games.

Chinese esports have taken off for a couple of reasons:

  1. Culturally, esports allows users to express individuality, through customized "skins" or digital costumes, that is often repressed by Chinese society.
  2. Economically, esports are mostly mobile in China, so users are loyal to gaming franchises, like "Army of Valor," or "Clash of Kings" instead of hardware platforms like PlayStations or X-boxes. Because of this, "gaming in China is for everybody," says Humphrey Ho, managing partner at Hylink, China's largest independent ad agency.

Between the lines: Ho notes that because Chinese gamers are mostly mobile, they tend to play different games throughout the day with different friends. U.S. gamers tend to binge game, and thus spend less money incrementally.

Go deeper: Twitch's rise brings trouble and opportunity for Amazon

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

What they're saying: Trump nominates Amy Coney Barrett for Supreme Court

Judge Amy Coney Barrett in the Rose Garden of the White House on Sept. 26. Photo: Oliver Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Democratic and Republican lawmakers along with other leading political figures reacted to President Trump's Saturday afternoon nomination of federal appeals court Judge Amy Coney Barrett to succeed Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the Supreme Court.

What they're saying: "President Trump could not have made a better decision," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement. "Judge Amy Coney Barrett is an exceptionally impressive jurist and an exceedingly well-qualified nominee to the Supreme Court of the United States."

Amy Coney Barrett: "Should I be confirmed, I will be mindful of who came before me"

Trump introduces Amy Coney Barrett as nominee to replace Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Photo: Olivier Douleiry/Getty Images

In speaking after President Trump announced her as the Supreme Court nominee to replaced Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Circuit Court Judge Amy Coney Barrett said on Saturday she will be "mindful" of those who came before her on the court if confirmed.

What she's saying: Barrett touched on Ginsburg's legacy, as well as her own judicial philosophy and family values. "I love the United States and I love the United States Constitution," she said. "I'm truly humbled at the prospect of serving on the  Supreme Court."

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 32,683,686 — Total deaths: 990,977 — Total recoveries: 22,535,887Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 7,072,897 — Total deaths: 204,446 — Total recoveries: 2,727,335 — Total tests: 99,488,275Map.
  3. States: New York daily cases top 1,000 for first time since June — U.S. reports over 55,000 new coronavirus cases.
  4. Health: The long-term pain of the mental health pandemicFewer than 10% of Americans have coronavirus antibodies.
  5. Business: Millions start new businesses in time of coronavirus.
  6. Education: Summer college enrollment offers a glimpse of COVID-19's effect.

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