Over 210 million people in China walked for cash last weekend
Tencent’s chat app got people moving
On the first day of Lunar New Year, my iPhone said I walked a total of 66 steps. Compare that to the 210 million people in China who walked 5,347 steps on average as part of Tencent’s holiday cash giveaway.
Users of the QQ chat app got one lucky draw entry for every 100 steps walked during the first three days of the Chinese New Year. The prize pool contained 200 million yuan (US$31.5 million) in cash and 4 billion yuan (US$630 million) in coupons.
Tencent says the idea was to encourage a healthy lifestyle during the holiday, when Chinese people typically sit for hours at home, stuffing themselves with festive food -- just like I did.
Millennials were the most active: Those born after 1990 walked an average of 5,443 steps, and made up 70% of the winners.
People living in the southwest were the most likely to get off the couch. Chongqing -- known as the “mountain city” for its hilly terrain -- topped the list with an average of 6,397 steps. That’s followed by Chengdu (home of the giant pandas) at 6,138 steps.
In all, the numbers are staggering. The company claims one seventh of China’s population joined in to enter the lucky draw. Together they walked 3.4 trillion steps in three days -- enough for 20 trips from the Earth to Mars… and back again.