Krafton's BGMI returns to action, reaching 40 million downloads in just six weeks
Last July, BGMI was also banned after it had reached over 100 million downloads a year after its launch
South Korean gaming company Krafton has recorded downloads of over 40 million for its free online game Battlegrounds Mobile India, or BGMI, just six weeks after the government allowed its relaunch for a limited trial run, say sources who track gaming apps.
Many gamers call it a revamped or Indian version of the highly popular PUBG Mobile which was banned in India in September 2020. The downloads include new users as well as older users who are updating the game, which was off the air for a long time by downloading the app again.
Based on App Annie data, BGMI is currently at number 11 among overall games on Google Play and listed between 6-8 on Sensor Tower. In India, 95 per cent of gamers use mobiles for playing games. The rest use PCs and consoles.
Krafton declined to comment on details about the relaunch of the game. Krafton also co-developed the controversial PUBG Mobile game with Chinese company Tencent but it was banned in India with 116 other Chinese apps, for fear that it might endanger India’s sovereignty. It had over 180 million subscribers at the time.
Last July, BGMI was also banned after it had reached over 100 million downloads a year after its launch. It was one of the most popular games in the country. The reason for the ban was concern that BGMI was communicating directly or indirectly with locations in China which could have compromised Indian data.
Krafton appealed against the ban and the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITY) relented, allowing it to relaunch the video game for a three month trial run from May end. Once the trial period is over, a final decision on its future will be taken.
MEITY minister of state Rajeev Chandrasekhar has clarified through a tweet that the three month trial was granted only because BGMI complied with issues of server location and data security.
He also said the government will keep a close watch on the game for other possible issues such as harm to users or addiction during the trial period.-Business Standard