Chinese minors limited to three hours of gaming per week
Authorities in China have announced even more stringent measures to prevent children from getting addicted to online video games. According to CNBC, the new rules allow those under the age of 18 to play online games for a maximum of three hours per week, that too only between 8 pm and 9 pm on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays, and public holidays. Here are more details.
2019 ruling allowed 1.5 hours of online gaming daily
Last month, we reported that Tencent deployed facial recognition technology called Midnight Patrol for 60+ mobile games that are tied into a state-run database for verifying identities. Tencent's system helped enforce the rules passed in 2019 that allowed children to play games for 1.5 hours each day, but not between 10 pm and 8 am.
The new laws are even more stringent than the 2019 rules. China's National Press and Publication Administration reportedly claimed the rules are a way to safeguard children's physical and mental health. The new rules can't be bypassed either. Companies and game developers won't be allowed to provide services to those who haven't logged in with their real names and provided government-issued IDs for verification.
Google, Apple app store revenues could suffer in China
According to CNBC, Niko Partners senior analyst Daniel Ahmad estimated that there are over 110 million minors who play video games in China. Ahmad speculated that the new ruling could lead to a sharp decline in the number of players and the amounts of time and money they spend on video games. Consequently, Apple and Google app stores could suffer proportionate losses in China.
All games would need to connect to central 'anti-addiction' system
The new regulation came into effect on Wednesday. The Wall Street Journal reported that all the video games will be required to connect to a central "anti-addiction" system operated by the National Press and Publication Administration in China. Probably tied to this new ruling, the value of Chinese developer NetEase's US-listed stocks fell by 4%.