India bans Garena Free Fire and 53 other 'Chinese' apps

india bans garena free fire and 53 other chinese apps

The Ministry of Home Affairs has suggested a ban on 54 Chinese mobile applications, including the popular battle royale game Garena Free Fire.

Incidentally, the developer of Garena Free Fire is based in Singapore, and the developer is not from China. The mobile game was one of India's most downloaded games last year and occupied the space created by PUBG Mobile after its ban in September 2020. Garena Free Fire was already removed from Google Play Store and app stores in India.

Some of the newly prohibited apps includeNetEase'sOnmoyji Arena and Astracraft, Sweet Selfie HD, Applock, Dual Space Lite, which are the clones or rebrands of many of the 321 applications affiliated with Beijing that New Delhi has banned since 2020 amid escalating geopolitical tensions between the two Asian superpowers.

India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology passed the order, citing Section 69a of the IT Act, 2000. A Google spokesperson acknowledged the order and said the firm was complying in a statement.

India is by far the chief market globally for app installations. According to App Annie last year, the South Asian country recorded over 25 billion downloads.

US giants and firms from the other nations, including South Korea and China, aggressively focused on India in the past decade as they looked for the next great growth region. For comparison, only a handful of Indian firms operate in China.