TikTok ban signed into law by President Biden — ByteDance now on the clock to sell, or 170 million Americans will lose the app

TikTok app store icon
(Image credit: Joe Raedle / Getty)

The U.S. move to ban TikTok in the country unless it is sold by parent company ByteDance has come into force this week after President Biden signed into law the foreign aid package which contains provisions regarding the ownership of the vertical video phenomenon. 

President Biden has signed a package of four total bills including the ‘Protecting Americans from Foreign Adversary Controlled Applications Act’, which cites ByteDance’s ownership of TikTok as a national security problem. 

While representatives hold that the country is seeking a forced separation of TikTok and ByteDance, if the parent company doesn’t sell up the app will banned. Now, TikTok has vowed to fight the ban legally.  

TikTok fights back 

In a statement given to iMore, a TikTok spokesperson told us “This unconstitutional law is a TikTok ban, and we will challenge it in court. We believe the facts and the law are clearly on our side, and we will ultimately prevail.” 

TikTok also says it has invested “billions of dollars to keep U.S. data safe and our platform free from outside influence and manipulation.” TikTok says the ban would “devastate” 7 million businesses and “silence 170 million Americans.” TikTok vowed that it would continue to challenge the ban, which it described as “unconstitutional,” all while continuing to invest and innovate “to ensure TikTok remains a space where Americans of all walks of life can safely come to share their experiences, find joy, and be inspired."

In his own video of response, CEO Shou Zi Chew promised viewers “we aren’t going anywhere.” 

As it stands, ByteDance now has 9 months to organize a sale of TikTok to another owner, with a possible three-month extension if needed. After that, the app will be banned in the U.S. Senator Marco Rubio, as reported by the BBC, said “For years we've allowed the Chinese Communist party to control one of the most popular apps in America... that was dangerously short-sighted… A new law is going to require its Chinese owner to sell the app. This is a good move for America.” 

A legal challenge to the bill could delay it for years before a resolution is ultimately reached. In the meantime, TikTok remains free and available on iPhones in the U.S. and is one of the best iPhone apps for entertainment on the market.

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Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design. Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9