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Apple forced to pull Meta's WhatsApp, Threads from China’s App Store. Here’s why.

Apple forced to pull Meta's WhatsApp, Threads from China’s App Store. Here’s why.

iPhone users in China no longer have access to some of the most popular messaging and social media apps.

Apple was ordered by the Chinese government on Friday to remove Meta's messaging app WhatsApp and its social media platform Threads from China's official app store. Along with Meta's apps, Apple was also forced to remove the Signal and Telegram messaging apps from the App Store.

“We are committed to following the laws of the countries in which we operate, even when we disagree,” an Apple spokesperson said in a statement. The Wall Street Journal.

China's internet censorship continues.

In general, the steps taken by the Chinese government to increase online access in the country are not too surprising. However, the timing of this recent ban targeting Meta's apps is interesting. The US government at the time Taking action to ban the popular social video app TikTok, which has ties to China through its China-based parent company Bytedance.

The Chinese government has specifically tried to reduce the distribution of messaging platforms like these four apps. Apps like Telegram, Signal, WhatsApp and Threads have been used in the past to organize protests and social movements against the government. Unlike China-based social media platforms, the government cannot control the spread of stories critical of the Chinese government and its officials on platforms such as Threads or Telegram.

China is the second largest market for Apple and the iPhone, so the impact of these restrictions is considerable. However, many Chinese citizens are used to these types of actions by the government and are well versed in getting around using them. VPNs and other solutions.

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