Battlegrounds Mobile India has been removed from the Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store in what is believed to be a re-invention of the ban by the government on the hugely loved smartphone game PUBG. The game was created through the Korean firm Krafton and released in India through Tencent, the Chinese company Tencent and was later restricted due to border conflicts in India, China, and India. China.
The game’s developer relaunched it with a brand new name (and visually censored) and was able to avoid government intervention until now.
We’ve reached out to Google, Apple, Krafton and the Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, to get his opinion.
It’s unclear what the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology seems to have directed that the ban be reinstituted as it stated to that the Telangana High Court recently that BGMI and PUBG were two different games and that no state had asked for the latter to be prohibited. In a recent parliamentary question response, the government claimed that PUBG was not banned and didn’t mention BGMI in any way.
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The demise of BGMI, as the game is called, is likely to be a huge impact on the gaming industry in India. In the last month, the game reached more than 100 million registered players, meaning that one out of thirteen players in India has installed and played the game. Krafton has offered to invest as high as $100 million in India and could be threatened due to the government’s abrupt and unproved decision to shut down its iconic property.
It is also an example of companies who choose to take to charm offensives and engage in diplomatically with the Indian government instead of contacting the courts for legal recourse. Initially, TikTok and, more recently, BGMI have attempted every trick to get the bans placed on their services lifted, except for the obvious choice of going to the courts.
They’ve both been unsuccessful. However, Krafton has failed more dramatically since it invested millions of dollars of investments after PUBG was shut down, and now it is facing the prospect of having its largest revenue stream in India shut off from players.