The ban comes at an inopportune time for TikTok's Beijing-based ByteDance, which was planning a massive ramp up of operations in India, where revenues are still low. Some users are reporting success, but most are failing to connect with that too.
Rushabh Doshi, a tech analyst at research firm Canalys, said the government could implement the ban in two ways - by demanding that the domestic app stores suspend them, and by asking telecom companies to restrict internet access to those apps.
Users might still be able to use apps especially those that don't need an active internet connection.
In the midst of ongoing tension at Sino-Indian border after a standoff with Chinese forces along the Line of Actual Control in Ladakh, the government of India on Monday took an unprecedented step and made a decision to ban at least 59 Chinese apps. In the quarter that would end Tuesday, the 59 apps that India has ordered to ban were installed about 330 million times, the firm said.
Zhao Lijian, a spokesperson for Chinese Foreign Ministry, told reporters in a briefing on Tuesday that "Indian government has a responsibility to uphold the legal rights of global investors including those from China".
The Indian government on Monday banned apps like TikTok, WeChat, UC Browser and Xiaomi's Mi Community over national security concerns as India-China bilateral relations remain strained after the death of 20 Indian soldiers in the Galwan Valley clash with Chinese PLA troops in eastern Ladakh. The Chinese government has also reminded its Indian counterpart that it has a responsibility to protect business rights.
In an official statement, Tik Tok India head Nikhil Gandhi said, "The government of India has issued an interim order for the blocking of 59 apps, including TikTok and we are in the process of complying with it". "I'm afraid that a lot of overseas investors will now be reluctant or hesitant given that policy changes can be so drastic".
Along with mobile app services, Chinese companies also control a significant share of India's electronics market, particularly that of mobile phones.
Flynn Murphy and Qian Tong contributed to the report.