In September, the Indian government slammed a ban on the popular gaming app PUBG Mobile, alongside 117 other apps that are of Chinese origin. The ban affected both the PUBG Mobile and Mobile Lite but has not been effective since then as both apps still continue to accommodate gamers from India. However, that may end soon as Tencent has officially announced that it would be pulling the plug off the gaming apps for Indian gamers.
The announcement posted on the PUBG Mobile official website reads thus,
To comply with the interim order of the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology dated September 2, 2020, Tencent Games will terminate all service and access for users in India to PUBG MOBILE Nordic Map: Livik and PUBG MOBILE Lite (together, “PUBG Mobile”) on October 30, 2020. The rights to publish PUBG MOBILE in India will be returned to the owner of the PUBG intellectual property.
We deeply regret this outcome, and sincerely thank you for your support and love for PUBG MOBILE in India“.
While the announcement is a heartbreaking one, considering the popularity of the app among Indian gamers, we must take a positive statement from it. Tencent will be handing over the rights to publish the game in India to the owner of the PUBG intellectual property which is Blue Hole Studio. Recall that BlueHole recently announcedthe revocation of the license given to Tencent to distribute the game in India.
The South Korean company was reportedly in talks with India telecom company Reliance Jio to get the game up and running in India once again. Later on, a LinkedIn job listing also suggested the company was returning to India as PUBG corporation. Thus, it safe to conclude that the app will be relaunched soon in India with a new licensee in the driving seat.
For now, we can’t identify the company BlueHole will be granting the publishing rights to but we expect that to be made known in no distant time. We’ll keep you update as more details emerge.