President Donald Trump says he plans to officially ban TikTok in the US — and might act as soon as Saturday.
Trump made the announcement on Air Force One on Friday night as he returned from a trip to Florida.
As far as TikTok is concerned, we’re banning them from the United States,” the president told reporters.
Trump said he could use emergency economic powers or an executive order to enforce the action. “I have that authority,” he said aboard the presidential plane.
TikTok is a Chinese-owned video app that’s become popular among Americans in the last two years or so.
Users on the app create, watch, and engage with videos that range from fun dance trends to beekeepers rescuing honeybees.
It was the world’s second most downloaded app in the third quarter of 2019, with an estimated 176 million downloads.
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TikTok lets users create and share short videos with music and camera effects. It is owned by Beijing-based ByteDance, founded by the entrepreneur Zhang Yiming.
The $75billion conglomerate acquired the Musical.ly app in 2017 and merged it with TikTok, bringing millions of new users.
It is the world’s most downloaded iPhone app — with nearly 800 million downloads across the globe, according to data from mobile research firm Sensor Tower.
Facebook has taken notice of TikTok’s rising popularity, and launched a competitor app called Lasso in November last year.
TikTok has said it has tens of millions of US users and hundreds of millions of users worldwide.
But while it’s considered fun by users, US lawmakers have raised intelligence, national security, and privacy concerns about the company’s ownership.
TikTok has denied allegations that it shares user data with the Chinese government.
Trump’s announcement on Friday came after reports claimed his administration was planning to order China’s ByteDance to sell TikTok.
Via the US Sun