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China tightens grip on app stores – CNET

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China is the world's biggest tech market, but it also may be the most regulated. It will be tightening its grip on industry from Monday, when app stores will be made to officially register with the government.

Around 75 percent of the 550 million smartphones used in China run Android, but the Google Play Store is banned in the country. There are many companies, like Baidu and Tencent, who've built app stores to fill that gap. Now, they'll all be officially regulated, the Cyberspace Administration of China advised on Friday.

The Cyberspace Administration's notice claimed that app stores aren't managed properly, and that this new measure will both make the stores safer and more profitable.

The Chinese government has always had a hand in how app stores are managed in the country. Apple earlier this month was made to pull the New York Times app from its store and last year had to shut its iTunes Movies and iBooks services.

This follows new regulations for app developers announced last July, when the Cyberspace Administration told app developers they had to keep a record of user activity for 60 days, establish the identity of users with real-name registration, monitor and report banned content and seek user consent before collecting personal information and location data.

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Source: CNET

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