The Indian government imposed a ban on the popular mobile game PUBG Mobile in September along with a slew of other apps and games under Section 69A of the Information Technology Act. The reason given behind the ban was that these apps were engaging in activities that are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity, defence and security of the country. Since then both the PUBG Mobile and PUBG Mobile Lite apps have been removed from the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store.
It was then assumed that the company would shut down its India servers for the game, in a similar fashion to TikTok, in order to comply with the instructions from the Government of India. However, that was not the case, and the servers remained available, with the players only being required to sideload the latest version of the game on to their phone. Tencent Games has announced that it is finally shutting down PUBG Mobile and PUBG Mobile Lite servers in India from October 30, which is also when it will return the PUBG Mobile distribution rights for India, back to Krafton.
Now that all of this has happened, here we will be answering some questions that you might have.
What happens to my data?
Is PUBG Mobile going to make a comeback to India?
After PUBG Corporation announced that it is revoking Tencent Games’ publishing rights for PUBG Mobile and PUBG Mobile Lite in India, it was presumed that this will address the Indian government’s security concerns. However, the government after that announced that it is not enough and the country is not thinking of allowing the game back into the country.
Soon after this, a new report by Hindu BusinessLine stated that the company is in talks with Reliance Jio to strike up a partnership for the game in India. The report stated that both the companies were in the final stages of negotiations. But soon after, a new report by Entrackr stating that PUBG Corporation is looking to partner with Bharti Airtel for the games to make a comeback to India.
As of now, the company has not officially stated if it is in talks with Indian companies like Airtel or Jio. However, considering the market size, we can expect the company to try each and every way to try and get back into the market.
Is PUBG Mobile Chinese?
PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds has been developed by the PUBG Corporation under Krafton Inc, which was earlier called Bluehole Inc. The game’s distribution license was acquired by Tencent Games for China. After acquiring the China distribution rights, Tencent Games started porting the game to mobile. After the game was ported, Tencent was given global distribution rights, considering it built up the game from scratch for mobile. However, the ownership of the game remained in the hands of the PUBG Corporation.
But, keep in mind, that the PUBG Corporation’s parent company, Krafton is now majorly owned by Tencent, as it has become the majority shareholder in the company.
Can you run PUBG Mobile in India using some trick?
Even though the games are banned in India, it is not the case in many other countries like Indonesia, the US, Australia and more. This means that there are multiple other servers you can connect to and play the game. However, to do that you will have to utilise a VPN service to mask your IP address and use a masked IP address of the country you want to access the servers of. Turning on a VPN and connecting to the PUBG Mobile servers of another country will definitely let you play the game, however, this is not completely legal and is not recommended by us.
Additionally, utilising a VPN connection will throttle the connection speeds, thus giving you a not so apt gaming experience.
Is there a legal way to play PUBG in India?
You currently cannot play PUBG Mobile or PUBG Mobile Lite legally in India. However, you can play PUBG PC, PUBG PS4 and PUBG Xbox One in the country as none of these games have been banned by the Indian government. However, keep in mind that none of these games is available for free and cost over Rs 1,000 in India.
What happens to all the money I spent on PUBG Mobile?
If you spent any money on PUBG Mobile, Tencent Games will not be returning it. However, if you recently did spend money using the Google Play Store payments system on a recent purchase, you can try and raise a complaint on the Play Store regarding the payment, and if they find it legitimate, they will return the money to your original form of payment.
Any good competitors?
Now that PUBG Mobile is gone from India, players are trying to find a good alternative. And one of the most popular alternatives is Call of Duty: Mobile, which has surged a lot in popularity since the PUBG Mobile ban. The game is owned by Activision and brings a lot of elements from the popular legacy of Call of Duty games. However, keep in mind, that this game is also developed and distributed by Tencent Games, globally.
There are also other alternatives like Garena’s FreeFire, that you can download and play. You can also wait for the upcoming, FAU-G from an Indian game development studio. However, from the look at its recent trailer, I would rather recommend that you stick to other games.
Express Tech is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@expresstechie) and stay updated with the latest tech news.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines