WeChat is the next TikTok

At least for Donald Trump

The Chinese chat app WeChat is a threat to national security and should therefore be banned. That is the opinion of American president Donald Trump. He has asked a judge in San Francisco to allow a ban on the app of the Chinese tech giant Tencent.

The US Department of Commerce earlier announced that Apple and Google apps would be banned from offering WeChat as of Sunday. The court ruled that the ban might restrict freedom of expression too much.

Many Chinese-speaking Americans depend on the chat app for their communication with friends in the US and China. Because China has restricted many Western apps and social media, WeChat is the only option for many people to send messages to friends and acquaintances in the Asian country. WeChat has about 19 million active users in the US. More than 1 billion people worldwide use the app, most of them are Chinese.

In the run-up to the US presidential election later this year, Trump is increasingly turning towards China. The president also called for a ban on video app TikTok from the Chinese tech company ByteDance. According to the US government, Chinese apps collect too much data on users they share with the Chinese government.

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