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TikTok has been conducting tests to allow users to play games on its video-sharing app in Vietnam, part of plans for a major foray into gaming, four people familiar with the matter said.

Bringing games to its platform would increase ad revenue as well as the time users spend using the app – one of the world's most popular with more than a billion monthly active users.

With a tech-savvy population with 70 percent of citizens under the age of 35, Vietnam is an attractive market for media platforms such as TikTok, Meta Platforms' Facebook and Alphabet's YouTube and Google.

TikTok, which is owned by Chinese company ByteDance, plans to roll out games more broadly in Southeast Asia, people said. That move could as early as the third quarter, two of them said.

The sources declined to be identified as the information has not yet been released publicly.

A TikTok representative said the company has been testing bringing HTML5 games, a common form of mini-games, into its app through connections with third-party game developers and studios like Zynga, but declined to comment on its plans for Vietnam or to voice its broader games ambitions.

“We're always looking for ways to enrich our platform and regularly test new features and integrations that bring value to our community,” the representative said in a statement emailed to Reuters.

ByteDance did not respond to a request for comment.

Reuters was unable to learn TikTok's plans to launch gaming features in markets. Although TikTok users can watch streamed games, they cannot play games on the TikTok app in most regions. Few games appear to be available in the United States.

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By Rebecca French

Rebecca French writes books about Technology and smartwatches. Her books have received starred reviews in Technology Shout, Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and Booklist. She is a New York Times and a USA Today Bestseller...