PUBG Mobile India's launch seems unlikely in the near future as the Indian government has reportedly refused to set aside its ban on multiple China-origin apps. As per a new report, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has issued fresh notices to TikTok and 58 other banned Chinese apps which purportedly states that the government is not satisfied with their response following their removal from the India-specific Google Play Store and Apple App Store back in June 2020. The report adds that the interim ban on these apps is now 'permanent' that further suggests unpleasant news for other banned Chinese apps such as PUBG Mobile. The developer of the mobile title, PUBG Corp which is owned by South Korea-based Krafton, had announced the return of an India-specific version after cutting ties with China-based Tencent last year. The mobile gaming still awaits formal approval from MeitY to operate in India again, as per old reports.
The India government had banned a total of 267 Chinese owned apps until November 2020 over national security reasons. PUBG Mobile and its sibling, PUBG Mobile Lite were also removed from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store back in September over the same security reasons. However, its developers PUBG Corp had teased its arrival in the country multiple times, and have stated that the company will ensure users' data safety. PUBG Corp has also sealed a partnership with Microsoft for its Azure cloud services to host the PUBG Mobile game data. But old reports citing multiple RTI replies suggest that the game would now launch in the country until March this year. An RTI response from the MeitY had stated that the PUBG Mobile India has not received the government's nod to operate in the country, yet.
Coming to the latest development, a report by Livemint states that the MeitY has extended the ban on TikTok and 58 banned Chinese apps indefinitely. These 59 apps were part of the first round of the crackdown that took place in June 2020. Meanwhile, PUBG Mobile’s fate in India remains largely unknown, and PUBG Mobile 2.0's arrival also appears to be uncertain for the time being. It appears that the purported March launch may get delayed as the government appears to be ramping up efforts to crackdown banned China-based apps. Earlier today, nCore games-developed FAU-G released in India for Android users.