Apple purges 25 000 illegal apps from Chinese App Store

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Apple recently performed a purge. No, not of all its tangled white earphones, but rather for the Chinese App Store.

In particular, Bloomberg reports that an estimated 25 000 illegal apps have been culled from that version of the store.

These were deemed illegal as they were gambling apps, which are not permitted on the Chinese variant of the marketplace.

Finding a sizeable chunk of the apps was easy, with roughly 4 000 of them tagged under “gambling”. The remainder was a tad more difficult to find as they did not disclose their full nature on the App Store.

“We have already removed many apps and developers for trying to distribute illegal gambling apps on our App Store, and we are vigilant in our efforts to find these and stop them from being on the App Store,” noted Apple in a statement made to Bloomberg via CCTV.

“Apple itself has set up the rules on how to allow apps onto its store, but it didn’t follow that, resulting in the proliferation of bogus lottery apps and gambling apps,” added the company’s statement.

As for what prompted this latest purge, The Verge believes it’s a move in a recent bunch to place the company in a more positive light in China, with coverage of Apple in the Asian nation said to be less than glowing of late.

This latest step follows similar ones that Apple has taken, having previously removed VPN-facilitating apps from the Chinese App Store.

It probably isn’t the last time that Apple will have to jump through a hoop to appease the Chinese government, but given the potential market of consumers the Asian powerhouse has, it’s understandable as to why the Cupertino-based company is bending to the country’s demands.

With Google also aiming to enter the Chinese market with a censored news app, despite protests from within the organisation, it looks like the country will be the next big battle ground for Silicon Valley heavyweights to duke it out.

Robin-Leigh Chetty

Robin-Leigh Chetty

When he's not reviewing the latest smartphones, Robin-Leigh is writing about everything tech-related from IoT and smart cities, to 5G and cloud computing. He's also a keen photographer and dabbles in console games.