Google applies for map license in China as deadline looms

The deadline to be granted an online mapping license in China is July 1

Google has applied for the necessary license to continue operating its online maps in China as the deadline for obtaining government approval approaches.

China's State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping said on Tuesday Google had applied for the license through a joint venture company. The application is currently under review.

Chinese authorities introduced new rules last year, stating that all companies providing online maps must obtain a license. Companies that do not meet the July 1 deadline will face prosecution by the Chinese government.

Google offered no new comment, only citing its previous response: "We're in discussions with the government about how we could offers a maps product in China."

The search giant is applying for the license as it has already faced difficulties with Chinese government regulations. Last year, Google's China operations faced a possible shutdown after the company announced it would no longer abide by the country's censorship laws and filter out certain search queries in China. The government, however, decided to renew a critical content provider license for Google.

But while Google continues to operate in the country, some of its products are blocked, including YouTube and Blogger. China regularly blocks websites containing politically sensitive content. Gmail has also been slow to access at times, the result of Chinese government interference, according to Google.

The company currently has a 19.2 percent share of the search engine market in China, according to Beijing-based research firm Analysys International. Domestic company Baidu is ranked first with a 75.8 percent share.

China is instituting the new regulations to prevent security leaks of sensitive locations and to ensure all online maps are accurate for users. Companies that wish to qualify, however, must store all their mapping data in servers located in the country.

China's State Bureau of Surveying and Mapping also revealed a change to the mapping regulations earlier this month. Authorities now state foreign companies can only apply for a mapping license through joint ventures with local Chinese companies.

In Google's case, the company that applied for the license, Guxiang Information Technology Co., is a joint venture between the search giant and a local Chinese partner.

Microsoft and Nokia have also applied for online mapping licenses through joint ventures with Chinese companies. Nokia has already received its license, while Microsoft continues to wait for approval.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags governmentregulationinternetGooglesearch enginesInternet-based applications and servicesMaps

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Kan

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Stocking Stuffer

SmartLens - Clip on Phone Camera Lens Set of 3

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

This Holiday Season, protect yourself and your loved ones with the best. Buy now for Holiday Savings!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Cathy Giles

Brother MFC-L8900CDW

The Brother MFC-L8900CDW is an absolute stand out. I struggle to fault it.

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?