Chinese gaming app PUBG Mobile is reportedly talking to telecom major Bharti Airtel to bring the popular multiplayer game back on the mobile screens of its Indian fans. The central government had on September 2 banned 59 more apps including PUBG, in addition to 165 mobile applications banned on two occasions earlier, citing security concerns.
As per Entrackr reports, PUBG Corporation, the parent company of PUBG Mobile, has started initial conversation with Airtel for handing over distribution rights for the Indian market. "The gaming platform is also busy in raising a lean team in India. It has been interviewing candidates with experience of under 4 to 6 years," the publication reported.
PUBG Corporation is a subsidiary of Bluehole Games, the South Korean company that developed PUBG.
The South Korean company was earlier in discussions with Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries' Jio Platforms, which, according to the publication, have been shelved for good.
The ban imposed by the Indian government has badly impacted PUBG Mobile's global growth. According to Sensor Tower, the global downloads of PUBG Mobile fell by over 26 per cent in September, owing to ban of PUBG in India. Once the top contributor to app charts, PUBG Mobile has slipped lower in the position ladder.
If the deal comes through, it will help PUBG get hold of one of its largest markets, and facilitate Airtel's entry into the online gaming market in India.
Following its ban in India, PUBG Corp announced that Tencent Games would no longer handle its India franchise. PUBG Corporation is the publisher and developer of the 2017 blockbuster battle royale video game, PLAYERUNKNOWN'S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG), on multiple platforms. This led to speculations that PUBG Mobile will soon be unbanned in India.
PUBG Mobile and PUBG Mobile Lite are developed by the Chinese company (Tencent Games) and it's the mobile versions of the game that are proscribed by the government.
By Chitranjan Kumar
Also Read: Will PUBG remain forever banned in India?
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