Apple launches limited Search Ads in mainland China

Beijing:¬†Apple’s advertising platform Apple Search Ads is now available in mainland China, but advertisers may have to gain state approval and licenses before using it on the App Store, the media reported.

Apple has expanded its advertising programme Apple Search Ads to China, meaning that developers and advertisers can now have App Store ads presented to users in the region.

Apple Search Ads has been steadily rolling out to more countries, but the Chinese version has extra conditions, AppleInsider reported.

As first spotted by AppInChina, advertisers and businesses need to be approved. Apple’s guide to advertisers cautions that they must provide a “company chop” — a kind of official stamp — for any firm using the platform.

Apple also lists examples of what documentation may be required as “government entities” authorise different types of ads. For instance, advertising games will require a “Value-Added Telecommunications Business License,” amongst other requirements.

AppInChina claims that most licenses are granted to companies that are 100 per cent Chinese-owned.

There are exceptions for joint ventures where Chinese companies control over 50 per cent, however, and AppInChina does propose using its Chinese licenses and partnering with non-Chinese firms.

“It’s also likely that Apple will begin to require these licenses to simply publish an iOS app in China within the next few months, as they’ve already done with the Game Approval Number (ISBN),” said AppInChina, “so it’s sensible to prepare for this eventuality in advance”.