In June, the Indian government announced that it was banning 60 Chinese apps, including TikTok and WeChat. Clearly tensions have increased, as New Delhi has banned a further 118 apps this week due to security and privacy concerns, one of which is the popular battle royale title PUBG Mobile.
Following the ban, PUBG’s developers announced that it will cut ties with Chinese giant Tencent Games, but only in India. “Moving forward, PUBG Corporation will take on all publishing responsibilities within the country. As the company explores ways to provide its own PUBG experience for India in the near future, it is committed to doing so by sustaining a localised and healthy gameplay environment for its fans,” says the PUBG Corporation in a statement.
According to TechCrunch, PUBG Mobile is one of the most popular mobile games in the country, featuring about 40 million monthly active users. That is before the ban — we don’t know how many continued to play the title following the ban.
Even though Google and Apple have complied with the New Delhi order by removing the apps from the respective app stores, the game is still playable if it’s already downloaded to a mobile device. The game just won’t be receiving updates through stores for the time being. Or, that is, until PUBG convinces the Indian government that it’s not published by a China-based conglomerate.
PUBG India won’t back down just yet. It announced that the ”… company is actively monitoring the situation around the recent bans and is committed to engaging with its passionate player base in India.”