TikTok, a short video platform that took the social media world by storm, by becoming one of the most popular apps out there, is now in the news for all the wrong reasons.
With over 2 billion all time downloads in 150 markets worldwide and 75 languages, the ByteDance owned app had everything going right for it. Till its Chinese origin got hit by the Covid-19 bug.
Well, it doesn't matter whether you use this popular social media platform or not, it's completely impossible to refrain from knowing about it. Blame it on the lockdown and heightened social media usage, TikTok was mentioned online in April 2020 for an unbelievable 22.9 million times, as per Talkwalker.
Arguably TikTok is one of the most popular app among teenagers and youngsters worldwide, which hooked up the teenagers but adults too. The Chinese originated app is competing with giants in the market such as Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat, with its rising number of TikTokers in the last 2 years.
What is happening with TikTok?
In Q1 of 2020, the app had 315 million downloads, 500 million of those come from India itself. (Source). But because of the border tension between China and India, and rising concern of national security India banned TikTok and 58 other Chinese apps on June 29 2020.
If that blow was not bad enough, the 3rd biggest market for TikTok -USA, also is slipping away, with threats of ban. And on Thursday, Trump bans US transactions with Chinese-owned TikTok and WeChat. The US Government alleged that TikTok is spyware for the Chinese government, that it pulls data on its American users and sends it to Beijing and consider it as a threat to national security.
TikTok’s parent company ByteDance faces a deadline of 15 September 2020 either to sell its US operations to Microsoft or another US firm or face an outright ban.
What about the deal with Microsoft
Behind the scenes, Microsoft is looking to buy the ByteDance’s TikTok after President threatened to ban the popular social media company because of national security fears. The deal could give Microsoft, a company best known for databases and operating systems, control of one of the largest and most influential social networks in USA.
Microsoft has all the data it needs on business usage of software, but it hasn’t been successful with pure consumer services in recent years. TikTok gives Microsoft a direct line to millions of youngsters using the app to watch videos and even those who use it to create content. It will help Microsoft to adopt its Windows operating system and make it more consumer-friendly.
Not just USA and India, many other countries across the globe have raised security concerns of the app, namely - Australia, Japan, Pakistan, Indonesia and HongKong.
Amidst this cloud of uncertainty and ban threats, time is surely running out for TikTok.