PUBG maker Tencent will engage with India for ban reversal
Earlier this week, India's Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology announced the decision to ban more than 100 Chinese apps over national security concerns. Now, Tencent, one of the biggest companies affected by the move, has expressed willingness to work with the Indian authorities to address their concerns and get the restrictions reversed. Here's all you need to know about it.
118 apps banned over data security concerns
On September 2, India blocked access to 118 mostly Chinese applications for engaging in "activities prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of India, defense of India, the security of state and public order." The main issue, according to the government, was the shady behavior of the apps, where they stole and surreptitiously transmitted users' data to servers located outside the nation's boundaries.
Many developers affected including Tencent
In the wake of the government's action, Tencent and many other Chinese developers have been hit. The WeChat-owner, in particular, has lost several apps, including VooV meeting, Tencent Weiyun, Tencent Watchlist, Chess Rush, Arena of Valor, and Ludo World. But, among all the purged apps, the biggest damage for Tencent has come from the departure of PUBG Mobile - a heavily-followed title in India.
Tencent has lost nearly $34 billion in market value
As per reports, the ban on PUBG and other apps has wiped nearly $34 billion off Tencent's market value in less than two days. This is the second-biggest dip for the company since the Trump administration banned transactions with its WeChat messaging app.
However, Tencent claims compliance with data protection laws
Considering the entire case, and the damage stemming from it, Tencent has clarified that it has not broken any Indian laws. The company said in a statement that it "takes the protection of user privacy and data seriously." "Our apps have always remained in compliance with applicable data protection laws in India and all other markets where we operate," it added.
"Looking forward to engage with Indian authorities"
Further, Tencent emphasized that it will engage with India to get the ban reversed. "We look forward to engaging Indian authorities to clarify our long-established policy and action in protecting user data, and hope to ensure the continued availability of our apps in India," the company said. However, there is no guarantee that PUBG or any other banned app is going to return.
India made a quarter of all PUBG downloads
Since its launch in 2018, PUBG or PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds has grown insanely popular in India, driving a culture of socially-interactive battle royale matches. According to Sensor Tower data, India has attributed to nearly 24% of the game's all-time global downloads. Tencent had also launched its Lite version in the country to draw people who did not have powerful phones to run the graphics-intensive title.