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Apple Removed Free Weibo from its Chinese App Store

Dec 18 2013, 8:43am CST | by , in News | Apple

Apple Removed Free Weibo from its Chinese App Store
Photo Credit: AppleInsider

Apple was forced to remove second app in the last several months that deals with Chinese laws on internet censorship

Apple Balla reports that, FreeWeibo, the application Apple had to remove from its app store in China was dealing with going around legal restrictions China has on the microblogging Sina Weibo, which is similar to Twitter. As reported by Agence France-Presse, Apple removed it from  its App Store on Friday. App’s developer believes that Apple had to remove the app by the order of the Chinese government.

FreeWeibo’s website explains that the app enables "uncensored and anonymous Sina Weibo search" and largely ignores "relevant laws, legislation and policy." The app has been developed in collaboration with Radio Netherlands

FreeWeibo representative said that Apple's Review Board for apps informed the developers that the reason for taking the app off was "because it goes against local laws." Apple has history been being cautious with apps that are not respecting local laws, particularly in China.

In October, Apple removed Open Door, an app that allowed iOS users  to break down internet firewalls, including the "Great Firewall of China." In April, Apple removed an app that allowed Chinese users to download books banned in China.

Apple understandably regards the Chinese market as increasingly important. After all, each quarter, the company books nearly $5 billion in China. The deal  between Apple and China Mobile, the biggest world wireless carrier will, according to some analysts, bring that $10 billion.

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