Apple Removes Hong Kong App After Facing Criticism from Chinese Authorities

In flip-flop, Apple bans app used by Hong Kong protestors

Referring to the space app, which supplied more noble use for these that stay in Hong Kong or are in taking part within the motion, Apple CEO Tim Cook gave a more detailed clarification to his employees in an interior letter on Thursday.

Apple removed an app from its App Store that provides real-time updates for Hongkongers about police and protester movements on October 10, becoming the latest global brand that has caved to pressure from the Chinese regime. He says a lot of American tech firms are thinking of building manufacturing sites outside China - "they worry the tariffs (imposed by the U.S. on Chinese-produced goods) may become permanent".

On Wednesday, Apple pulled out a crowdsourced map service, called HKmap.live, which is being used by Hong Kong protesters to track police activity from its App Store.

Jewelry seller Tiffany & Co., game developer Blizzard and footwear maker Nike have also been caught up in Chinese outrage over Hong Kong-related issues.

Apple is just the latest multinational company to toe the line when it comes to China and the protests going on in Hong Kong. China is Apple's third-largest market; it generated $52 billion in revenues during 2018, mainly from the iPhone.

Like real protestors, players could buy protective gear and weapons, but they could also be arrested and even extradited to China. "Apple has to think about the consequences of its unwise and reckless decision", read an article for the People's Daily newspaper.

"We disagree [with] Apple and Hong Kong police force's claim that HKmap App endangers law enforcement and residents in Hong Kong", the app said on Twitter.

US President Donald Trump said in announcing a partial trade deal with China yesterday that he had raised Hong Kong in the talks after previously warning that a deteriorating situation in the city could affect the negotiations. The news app was still available in Hong Kong. (It's not the only one either: companies ranging from Blizzard to the National Basketball Association have also had similar issues.) The issue for Apple is that it relies heavily on China, both to make its products and also as a market place.

Dead, At Least 5 Wounded In Brooklyn Club Shooting
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Protesters with face masks walk on a road during a protest in Hong Kong, Saturday, Oct. 12, 2019.

Apple CEO Tim Cook.

Those fears were "magnified on the world stage" by China's response to a tweet by a USA basketball executive supporting Hong Kong's protesters, he said. The Quartz app was removed from China's version of Apple's App Store, again it seems following anger from the Chinese.

After elaborating on what he felt was the app's ability to limit danger, Mok wrote: "I sincerely hope that Apple will choose to support its users and stop banning HKmap.live simply out of political reason [sic] or succumbing to China's influence like other American companies appear to be doing".

In an internal Apple website, Cook defended the move to remove the police-tracker app, explaining that this is a case of technology being used both "for good and for ill".

There is "overwhelming bipartisan support" in the US Congress for the people of Hong Kong, Mr Cruz said, adding he was pressing for the Senate to take up and pass the Hong Kong Human Rights Act quickly. On its own, this information is benign.

Google found itself at the business end of a firestorm of criticism when news leaked that it was working on a special, censored, search engine for the Chinese market. It's a responsibility that we take very seriously, and it's one that we aim to preserve.

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