Beijing may be further tightening its censorship. This time it seems to be targeting iPhone apps and Apple has complied.
App developers who want to publish their apps on the Chinese Apple App Store will now be required to show proof of a Chinese state-issued license.
To get one, app operators will have to register with the Chinese state and comply with data transfer and censorship requirements.
In the past, US-based apps like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter could be accessed in China with the help of VPNs, but the new rule effectively requires the backend of all approved apps to be hosted in China.
It’s set to affect hundreds of thousands of apps on Apple’s Chinese App Store and how accessible they are.
Some developers have voiced concerns about Apple’s decision to comply. With some suggesting they’ll remove their apps from the store if they’re forced to file.
Apps without proper filings by March next year will face punishment. Newly developed apps need to comply with the rule as of September.