TikTok is set to be removed from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store as soon as Sunday (September 20) for those in the US after the US government issued a blanket ban on the Chinese app.
The new ban, issued by the US Department of Commerce, also covers Chinese social network WeChat, and it orders both Apple and Google to remove each service from their app stores so that users in the country can no longer download them.
WeChat will be removed by Sunday (September 20), with TikTok allowed to stay online until November 12 at the latest. It's currently unclear if TikTok will also be removed this coming weekend.
In a press statement, US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, said: “Today’s actions prove once again that President Trump will do everything in his power to guarantee our national security and protect Americans from the threats of the Chinese Communist Party.
“At the President’s direction, we have taken significant action to combat China’s malicious collection of American citizens’ personal data, while promoting our national values, democratic rules-based norms, and aggressive enforcement of U.S. laws and regulations.”
ByteDance, the company behind TikTok, is in talks with the Trump administration on how the service could continue to operate in the US. This includes a proposal that would see TikTok's global business become a US-based company.
TikTok is known to have millions of users throughout the US. It's currently unclear how Apple or Google intend to respond to the ban, but expect WeChat to be removed from your current app store of choice by the end of this weekend if you're in the US.
Whether this means the app will be unable to work on your existing Android or iPhone is currently unclear.
The Department of Commerce statement states that after November 12 it will be 'prohibited' for anyone to provide web hosting services to support the running of TikTok, suggesting it may no longer work for users in the US after this date.
Using a VPN to make your connection appear that it's originating from another country may enable you to access TikTok, although we'll have to wait until November 12 to see if that's the case.
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