China has officially blocked iBooks and iTunes movies. In just seven months after service was launched in China, the country has decided to block all sales. The culprits appear to be the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television. Such a mouthful. In the confusing tech twist, China’s broadcasting regulator decided to toss Apple after initial government approval. What does this mean for iTunes movies and iBooks? Will the company’s presence in China be at risk?
China is Second Largest Market for Apple
Apple hopes iTunes movies and iBooks services will be back soon. And for good reason. China is their second largest market. Second only to the U.S. for product and services sales. Their presence in the Asian country is big with storefronts in nearly every major city. The service block comes at a time when the broadcasting regulator is using its authority for online content. There has been no official comment by the regulatory committee.
What does this mean for Apple Pay and Apple Music?
Apple Pay and Apple Music services appear to still be offered. However, the block of iTunes movies and iBooks may be a scary indicator for Apple Pay. Which was launched in Chinese markets in February. It is only the fifth country to have the service with big profits to be gained. The Chinese mobile payment market is worth an estimated $90 billion. Evidence seen from the growth of Alibaba’s Alipay with more than 400 million registered users.
Is iBooks Really Bad Enough to Block?
The crackdown of online content by Chinese regulators is far reaching. News, social media and entertainment have been long scrutinized in the country. The Communist Party seems to still have a strong hold on the people’s choices. This may prove to be profitable for locally branded Chinese tech companies, such as Huawei and Xiaomi. The cyberspace sovereignty continues to threaten outside tech. Unfortunately, iBooks can be perceived as a threat. Chinese citizens have access to eBooks that may sway a government upheaval, or maybe people will just enjoy reading a romantic comedy or two.