CEO of TikTok developer ByteDance stands down as boss

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U.S. investigations of TikTok gather steam.
TikTok has dominated by the App Store over the past year.
Photo: Kon Karampelas/Unsplash CC

Zhang Yiming, CEO and co-founder of TikTok maker ByteDance, has announced that he will step down from his role leading the company. Co-founder Liang Rubo, currently the company’s head of human resources, will replace him in the role. Zhang, 38, will instead focus on “long-term strategy” for the company.

TikTok has enjoyed a period of one year at the top of the App Store as the most popular non-gaming app on the platform. However, it’s also seen its fair share of challenges during that time — most notably in the U.S. when former President Trump labelled it a threat to national security.

China works to circumvent iOS 14.5’s App Tracking Transparency

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Your iPhone will soon offer a bit more privacy.
Apple is making it tougher for apps to track users.
Graphic: Apple

China’s state-backed China Advertising Association is already looking for ways to get around Apple’s upcoming App Tracking Transparency feature, the Financial Times reported Tuesday.

The organization’s approach reportedly involves something called a “CAID.” This can supposedly act as an alternative means of tracking users to the iPhone’s ad identifier, or IDFA. TikTok parent company ByteDance issued a guide for app developers that describes how marketers “can use CAID as a substitute if the user’s IDFA is unavailable.”

Trump’s executive order won’t hurt Fortnite or League of Legends

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Fortnite-Battle-Lab
Fortnite developer Epic Games is part owned by Tencent.
Photo: Epic Games

President Donald Trump’s executive order blocking “transactions” involving Tencent’s WeChat will not hurt games owned, or partially owned, by the company.

That means it would not affect the likes of Riot Games’ League of Legends or Epic Games’ Fortnite, both of which have financial ties to Tencent. Instead, the executive order covers only WeChat transactions.

FTC and Justice Department reportedly investigate TikTok

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U.S. investigations of TikTok gather steam.
TikTok's not going away just yet.
Photo: Kon Karampelas/Unsplash CC

Both the Federal Trade Commission and the Justice Department launched probes into allegations that TikTok breached an agreement regarding child-privacy protections, Reuters reported Wednesday.

News of the investigations follows a story earlier this week claiming the U.S. government might ban TikTok for security reasons.

YouTube wants to take on TikTok with upcoming ‘Shorts’ feature

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2020 is the year everyone wants to be TikTok famous.
Big tech is setting its sights on taking down TikTok.
Photo: Aaron Yoo/Flickr CC

TikTok, the popular video-sharing app that is especially popular among young people, is going to get some fresh competition from Google later this year.

Google is reportedly planning to create its own version of TikTok with a new Youtube feature called “Shorts” that will live inside the platform’s apps on Android and iOS.

Why TikTok could become Apple Music’s scariest rival

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2020 is the year everyone wants to be TikTok famous.
Peace of mind for parents.
Photo: Aaron Yoo/Flickr CC

It’s the year 2020 and absolutely everyone is making a streaming service, including TikTok.

The budding social network is hard at work inking licensing deals for its upcoming music streaming service, Resso, that will compete against Spotify and Apple Music. TikTok owner ByteDance reportedly struck a deal with the agency Merlin, which represents tens of thousands of artists, paving the way for the company to launch its music app globally.

Shifting focus from being a video-sharing app to creating a music platform may seem like an odd move for TikTok. But after months of binging on TikTok videos, I’m convinced it could become the biggest threat to Apple Music and Spotify.