The popular video-sharing app TikTok might soon be a thing of the past in the United States. Well, that’s if President Donald Trump has anything to do with it.
Business Insider reports that Trump announced this to journalists during a briefing onboard his presidential airplane, Air Force One, on Friday evening.
"As far as TikTok is concerned, we’re banning them from the United States."
TikTok is owned by the Chinese tech company ByteDance.
The banning of the app in the US is part of an ongoing battle between the United States and China regarding trade deals and the COVID-19 pandemic.
But will Trump actually be able to ban the app? Yes. According to the Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernisation Act of 2018, the President has the authority to block international companies and/or deals that might be deemed as a national security threat.
Trump has played this card twice since he has been President and one of those decisions involved a Chinese company.
Meanwhile, Microsoft has put its hand up to buy the US operations of TikTok.
The BBC reports that Microsoft has been in talks with Trump over the weekend about the possible acquisition of TikTok’s US operations.
Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft has stressed that the US-based tech giant "fully appreciates the importance" of addressing Trump’s concerns.
In a blog post on its website, Microsoft stated that a full security review of the app will be conducted and that they will also have to provide the US government with a list of the proper economic benefits to the country.
Microsoft hopes to finalise the deal with ByteDance, by the 15th of September 2020.
TikTok was launched in September 2016 in China and soon became a massive hit, with 800 million users currently worldwide.
Watch the NBC video below showcasing how users of TikTok are reacting to the news that Trump wants to ban it in the US.
Image credit: InsideHook