According to reports, Apple took down more than 25000 illegal apps from the China version of the App Store. These apps were regarded as ‘foul’ because they did not meet the Chinese regulations. Around 4000 of these apps were related to “gambling” and hence were taken down. Gambling apps are illegal and not allowed on the Appstore in China.
Reports have surfaced that many developers in China tried distributing illegal gambling apps on the Appstore, disguised with the skin of different apps. These apps sold fake lottery tickets and offered gambling services. ” We are vigilant in our efforts to find these and stop them from being on the App Store.” a spokesman from Apple told the media.
These reports were originally reported by state broadcaster CCTV. Apple has been under the heat from the Chinese media due to their inability to curtail the use and spread of illegal apps on the app store.
Removing these apps won’t put an end to the problem –
The deputy director of the Centre of Communication Law Studies at China University of Political Science and Law, Zhu Xi, said that even though Apple has taken the action of removing the illegal apps from the App store, the thousands of people who’ve already installed it can still use it. He advised Apple to take strict action by shutting down the Apple accounts of these people and punish them within their jurisdiction.
Apple has previously removed network altering VPN apps from the Appstore. VPN or Virtual Private Network apps allow the users to alter their network settings and escape the strict Chinese internet regulations. China has blocked access to ‘foreign’ apps and websites like Facebook.
Google, another tech giant and competitor of Apple, was also under the heat when they decided to re-enter the Chinese market. They planned to introduce censored versions of their apps, which was subject to a lot of controversies.