India Bans 59 Chinese Apps: TikTok, WeChat, UC Browser Among Them

India has banned the use of 59 Chinese apps, as these were allegedly being used for data leak. The reach of these apps was huge, and is likely to impact millions of users.
Sshradha Sinngh
By: Sshradha Sinngh Updated: Jun 30, 2020 14:19 IST
India Bans 59 Chinese Apps: TikTok, WeChat, UC Browser Among Them
India Bans 59 Chinese Apps : TikTok, WeChat, UC Browser

On Monday June 29 the Union government announced a ban on use of 59 Chinese mobile applications in India. This list includes top social media platforms such as TikTok, WeChat, UC Browser, ShareIT, Clubfactory amongst others.

The Government has taken to this step amidst rising tension between India and China since the last two weeks. Following many complaints about personal data being exposed and transferred abroad without authority, this ban has been imposed under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act.

This step by India could lead to other countries also following the cue and taking a step against these apps. This move will also ensure safety and sovereignty of India's cyberspace, and have some major implications on the revenue that China earned through these.

Here's the complete list of the apps banned

  1. TikTok
  2. Shareit
  3. Kwai
  4. UC Browser
  5. Baidu map
  6. Shein
  7. Clash of Kings
  8. DU battery saver
  9. Helo
  10. Likee
  11. YouCam makeup
  12. Mi Community
  13. CM Browers
  14. Virus Cleaner
  15. APUS Browser
  16. ROMWE
  17. Club Factory
  18. Newsdog
  19. Beutry Plus
  20. WeChat
  21. UC News
  22. QQ Mail
  23. Weibo
  24. Xender
  25. QQ Music
  26. QQ Newsfeed
  27. Bigo Live
  28. SelfieCity
  29. Mail Master
  30. Parallel Space
  31. Mi Video Call – Xiaomi
  32. WeSync
  33. ES File Explorer
  34. Viva Video – QU Video Inc
  35. Meitu
  36. Vigo Video
  37. New Video Status
  38. DU Recorder
  39. Vault- Hide
  40. Cache Cleaner DU App studio
  41. DU Cleaner
  42. DU Browser
  43. Hago Play With New Friends
  44. Cam Scanner
  45. Clean Master – Cheetah Mobile
  46. Wonder Camera
  47. Photo Wonder
  48. QQ Player
  49. We Meet
  50. Sweet Selfie
  51. Baidu Translate
  52. Vmate
  53. QQ International
  54. QQ Security Center
  55. QQ Launcher
  56. U Video
  57. V fly Status Video
  58. Mobile Legends
  59. DU Privacy

Reactions From Indian App Makers

Many Indian app companies have supported this major step as it will help them promote their Indian versions in the Indian market now.

InMobi, owner of the video app Roposo competes with TikTok and said the move would open up the market for its platform. ShareChat, another Indian social networking platform also welcomed this move.

Bolo Indya's co-founder and CEO Varun Saxena said “We welcome the decision as we resonate the concerns raised by the government. This is the opportunity for Bolo Indya and other Indian apps to deliver value, keeping Indian culture and data security at the highest priority,”

Reach Of the Chinese Apps in India 

This will impact one in three smartphone users and the major impact will be seen on TikTok, Clubfactory and UC Browser. The cumulative users of these banned apps in India is about 500 million (50 Crore). TikTok alone has more than 100 million users.

Research firm Sensor Tower estimates the 59 banned apps have accumulated 490 Crore downloads from Apple Inc's India App Store and Alphabet Inc's Google Play since January 2014, including 75 crore so far this year.

TikTok's Clarification Report

Immediately after this announcement was made, TikTok released their statement saying they don't pass any information to any foreign government including China and clarifications for the same have been submitted to the government.

In a statement, TikTok India head Nikhil Gandhi is heard persuading the government to change its stance on the TikTok app “TikTok has democratised the internet by making it available in 14 Indian languages, with hundreds of million of users, artists, story-tellers, educators and performers depending on it for their livelihood, many of whom are first time internet users”

TikTok employees 2,000 people in India, who may also feel the impact of this decision. 

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