India blocks Baidu and Weibo from Google and Apple app stores

Baidu app

India has blocked Baidu app and Weibo amidst COVID-19 and border tensions. The Baidu app has been pulled down from the Google Play Store. However, we are still able to access the website via PC. While Baidu is the answer to Google Search, Weibo is almost equivalent to Twitter. You should note that China has banned both Google and Twitter die to security restrictions.

Launched in 2009, Weibo has over 500 million registered users worldwide. Interestingly, PM Modi had opened an account on Weibo in 2015 before he visited the country. Modi had over 2 lakh followers with 100 plus posts. His first Webio post was like this – “Hello China! Looking forward to interacting with Chinese friends through Weibo”.

Baidu has been testing the service for the past two years. The company would like to increase the engagement and is evident from the talk the CEO rendered during his visit to IIT Madras in January 2019. The closure of the Baidu Search is a big setback since it affects the market share of the company. The ban on Weibo is also a matter of concern because bloggers used to get tips from the site. It will be tough for tech bloggers to get tips regarding unreleased smartphones and electronic devices.

Upon checking, we infer that both Baidu and Weibo have been taken off from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. The Government has issued specific instructions to ISP to block the apps. Both Weibo and Baidu were on the list of 47 news apps that was banned on July 27.

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The Government had banned 59 apps in the first phase and it includes TikTok, UC Browser, Helo, Likee, Shareit, Mi Community, CamScanner, and much more. The apps included in the first phase are the core apps used by several people across India. The Mi Community was a discussion board with plenty of content in the form of resources. The apps that are included with the second set were basically cones of the apps that were banned in the first phase.

Anand Narayanaswamy is the editor-in-chief of Netans. He was recognized as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for 9 years (2002 to 2011) and again as a Microsoft MVP in Surface under Windows and Devices in January 2024. He worked as a Chief Technical Editor with ASPAlliance and was part of ASPInsider program. Anand has published several articles and reviews related to various software and hardware products for various software and technology related websites. He is also active on social media and also participates as an Influencer for various brands. Anand can be reached at admin@netans.com