Report: Apple Removes Generative AI Apps From China App Store

Apple, App Store

Apple has reportedly removed more than 100 generative artificial intelligence (AI) apps from its China app store.

The move was made Tuesday (Aug. 1) and comes ahead of China’s new regulation of generative AI that will be implemented in two weeks, the South China Morning Post reported Tuesday.

Apple did not immediately reply to PYMNTS’ request for comment.

The company said in a notification to developers that it removed the apps “because they include data that is illegal in China,” according to the South China Morning Post report.

China’s regulation of generative AI models, which will take effect Aug. 15, covers all generative AI content services and requires firms to promote “healthy content,” “adhere to core socialist values,” and avoid generating content that is false or threatens national security, the report said.

The regulation also requires companies to avoid several forms of discrimination in the design of their algorithms and the selection of training data, per the report.

Companies aiming to comply with the new set of AI regulations will have a short runway before they need to do so, as the rules that will go into effect on Aug. 15 were announced June 13, PYMNTS reported in June.

Only firms planning to offer services to the Chinese public need to submit security assessments, which suggests that firms working on enterprise-facing products or those intended for use by overseas users would be given more leeway.

Most Chinese tech companies that are developing AI applications have so far focused primarily on ones designed solely for industrial and enterprise use.

In other news around the regulation of AI in China, it was reported in May that the country has cracked down on the technology amid a rise in deepfake scams.

The heightened scrutiny of the technology followed a case in which a man was scammed into giving money to a fraudster who used AI-powered face-swapping technology to pose as the man’s friend, Reuters reported May 22.

The case prompted discussion on the social media platform Weibo, where “#AI scams are exploding across the country” became a trending topic, according to the report.