Delivering more setbacks to Chinese companies, India has decided to go for another digital strike. Days after banning 59 Chinese apps, the Union government on Monday has announced a ban on 47 more apps with Chinese origin. Earlier, the popular apps like ByteDance’s TikTok, Alibaba’s UC Browser, which had a huge user base in India was banned citing national security and privacy concerns.
The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology will be soon releasing the list of 47 apps. This list will also contain the alternatives or the lite versions of the previously banned apps, replacing the apps which were taken down from the app stores. However, some top gaming titles are also expected to be on the list.
The official statement is not yet generated.
Apart from that, the Indian Government has also listed 275 more Chinese apps and will be observed that if they provide any violation of national security and misusing the user’s data. This list may contain other highly used apps in India like Tencent-backed PUBG, Alibaba’s Ali Express, phone maker Xioami, video streaming app like Reso, and many more apps mainly under ByteDance.
Since the government has started this revolution of “Atma Nirbhar” and banned 59 Chinese apps, their clones or we can say their alternatives have shown a wide range of increase in installation and risen to the top rankings of PlayStore. For example, Likee Lite – a low-level version of Chinese app Like, Snack Video – and alternative for TikTok. These apps have gained another level of appearances in users.
According to the data from Sensor Tower, Snack Video got approximately 10 million new downloads between June 29 to July 19. It was 59 times higher than its download between June 8 and June 28. Another app that has shown a surge in downloads is the second alternative of TitTok, Zili. It was observed that Zili’s download increased by 167% within a month to nearly 8 million users.
Indian apps have also gained an advantage from this ban, In-Mobi owned Roposo, along with Zili and Dubsmash, together got 12.8 million downloads in India. Roposo has the most download with 71 million installs, followed by Zili – 51 million and Dubsmash – 30.4 million.
According to the Ministry of Information Technology, the actions were taken under section 69A of the Information Technology Act 2009, based on the rules the government has decided to ban the apps since given the information available they are engaged in activities which were prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, the security of the state and public order, said by the government press release.
But the ban on these Chinese apps will hinder business communication. It will be difficult for Indian exporters to strike a deal with China as these apps were used as a business communication platform since China does not use apps like Whatsapp, Google, etc. The most used apps among traders were WeChat. The apps used for communication was easily translated the English language into Chinese and vice-versa. India’s cotton industry will also be get affected in the short-run because China absorbs the quarter of the shipment of these products from the country. It can also lead to a situation where China will increase the import duties on Indian products.
However, if we talk about the ban on PUBG – which is the heart of youth right now, will also affect business. PUBG India is the largest market with 175 million installs to date and over 24% of the total downloads. It has a vast fanbase in Indian citizens especially young players. According to the reports, it has been observed that its craze spiking has moved to harmful effects. Therefore, Pakistan decided to ban PUBG due to the suicidal attempts of the user as not completing the tasks. Additionally, there have been various reports claiming that this game is extremely addictive, a waste of time, and has a negative effect on people’s psychological and physical health.
This all starts with the rising tension between India and China in the Line of Actual Control (LAC) where 20 Indian troops were killed in the violent face-off with China troops.