Modern Chinese, also known as Simplified Chinese Characters is the primary language spoken in mainland China. The Xiandai Hanyu Tongyong Zibiao lists over 7,000 commonly used characters in Modern Chinese with the Simplified Chinese Characters making up the majority of them. The number of native speakers is currently unknown, however between the years 1984 and 2001 it has been reported that up to 1.2 billion speak a form of the language.
Modern Chinese is the official language of the People's Republic of China as well as Singapore. But it is traditionally used in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan as well. Although most of the Simplified Chinese Characters being used today is a result of works moderated by the People's Republic of China(The PRC) it pre-dates the formation of the PRC by 1400 years, dating back to the Qin Dynasty.
Simplified Chinese Characters has been reformed many times over the last thousand years and has been the basis of many other alphabets found in Asian culture, most notably Japanese and Korean who adopted it in 1900 and 1910 respectively.