Apple Removes Popular VPNs From Its App Store in China

Apple Removes Popular VPNs From Its App Store in China

According to The Times, previous year Apple agreed to remove news apps created by The New York Times from its app store, claiming the request had come from Chinese authorities.

From Apple's perspective, the move is likely a gesture of good faith as it continues its efforts to maintain strong ties with China's government, which has heavily restricted the ability of western technology companies to compete.

However, the VPN apps will remain available to users from the different place's App Store by placing their billing address to be outside China's territory.

The company further observed that "all major VPN apps for iOS" have been dumped from the App Store in China according to its research.

NordVPN is still working in China, but Kamden added that the company never had an Apple app as it was "expecting similar issues".

VPN usage has also grown in the past few months in the United States, particularly after Congress undid FCC rules set to take effect which would have prevented ISPs from collecting customer browsing histories and selling that data to third parties.

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In addition, China is just too big a market for Apple to simply ignore. eMarketer estimates smartphone users in the country will grow from 625.1 million this year to 814.3 million by 2021.

The Beijing has shut down the most of the China based providers, and it has to target the overseas services to bids to tighten to its control the over the internet service. VPN services allow Chinese citizens to bypass government's restrictions on internet usage and access uncensored websites and content.

State-run China Mobile, China Unicom, and China Telecom were told to ensure that their 1.3 billion subscribers can't use VPNs to access blocked content, while popular VPN provider GreenVPN was shut down in early July.

Now, 33 years after the year of 1984, are we going to see 2017 become a bit more like 1984 - with Apple's assistance? Critics call China's "great firewall" one of the world's most advanced censorship systems.

But Yokubaitis also laid bare Apple's core problem: It still needs to worry about profits. Apple said in the statement. Although Apple said it would keep the encryption keys and would not compromise the privacy of users, some pundits have suggested that housing data in China could form a pressure for Apple to pass data in future disputes.

"NordVPN stands for freedom of speech, and we will do all we can to make sure Internet users in China have full access to Internet", said Marty P. Kamden, NordVPN's chief marketing officer in a statement to Fox News.

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