‘TikTok pre­dicts $6bn loss af­ter ban’

Chi­nese app was down­loaded in In­dia 611m times in this year’s 1st quar­ter

The Asian Age - - Nation -

Beijing, July 3: Chi­nese tech gi­ant uni­corn ByteDance Ltd is an­tic­i­pat­ing a loss of over $6 bil­lion af­ter three of its apps, in­clud­ing the hugely pop­u­lar video app TikTok, were banned by In­dia this week, a me­dia re­port here said.

Be­sides Tiktok, In­dia banned on Mon­day 58 other apps with Chi­nese links, in­clud­ing the pop­u­lar UC Browser, for en­gag­ing in ac­tiv­i­ties prej­u­di­cial to sovereignt­y and in­tegrity of In­dia, de­fence of In­dia, se­cu­rity of state and pub­lic or­der.

The ban comes in the wake of the on­go­ing stand-off along the Line of Ac­tual con­trol in east­ern Ladakh with Chi­nese troops.

The $6 bil­lion amount is most likely more than the com­bined losses for all the other Chi­nese apps banned by In­dia, China’s Caix­in­global.com re­ported, quot­ing sources close to the com­pany's se­nior man­age­ment.

ByteDance be­came one of China’s lat­est homegrown tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies to run into grow­ing re­sis­tance from for­eign gov­ern­ments wary of the per­ceived ties to the Chi­nese gov­ern­ment and con­cerns about pro­tect­ing user data, it said.

De­scrib­ing In­dia’s ban of 59 China-de­vel­oped apps as un­prece­dented, the re­port said it is a huge blow to the global ex­pan­sion of TikTok, which is touted as the most pop­u­lar Chi­nese app overseas. In­dia is its largest mar­ket in terms of users out­side China, where the ser­vice is called Douyin.

The ByteDance apps banned were its short video plat­forms TikTok and Vigo Video, as well as its so­cial net­work­ing app Helo. Ten­cent’s mes­sag­ing plat­form WeChat and five of its other apps were also banned. Other big tech China firms, in­clud­ing Alibaba Group Hold­ing Ltd. and Baidu Inc., also had their prod­ucts banned.

All the 59 apps have now been re­moved from Ap­ple

Inc. and Google LLC's app stores for the In­dian mar­ket.

TikTok was down­loaded in In­dia 611 mil­lion times in this year's first quar­ter, equat­ing to 30.3% of its to­tal down­loads world­wide in the quar­ter and nearly dou­ble the to­tal num­ber of In­dia down­loads for all of 2019, the re­port quoted an­other pub­li­ca­tion, Sen­sorTower, as say­ing. The con­se­quences of In­dia's lat­est de­ci­sion could be more long-last­ing, an­a­lysts told Caixin.

Re­spond­ing to the In­dian gov­ern­ment's move, TikTok said it would fully com­ply with the de­ci­sion. ByteDance em­ploys over 2,000 full-time lo­cal staff in In­dia.

◗ THE $6 BIL­LION amount is most likely more than the com­bined losses for all the other Chi­nese apps banned by In­dia, China’s Caix­in­global.com re­ported

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