App Allowing Chinese Citizens Access to Global Internet Quickly Disappears | Voice of America

WASHINGTON – A mobile app launched last week in China that many there hoped would allow access to long banned Western social media sites abruptly disappeared from Chinese app stores a day after its unveiling.

Tuber, an Andriod app backed by Chinese cyber security software giant Qihoo 360, first appeared to be officially available last Friday. It offered Chinese citizens limited access to websites such as YouTube, Facebook and Google, and it facilitated some 5 million downloads following its debut.

Yet a day later, the Tuber app disappeared from mobile app stores, including one run by Huawei Technologies Co. A search for the app’s website yielded no results when VOA checked Monday. It’s unclear whether the government ordered the takedown of the app.

Experts told VOA that such ventures are sometimes designed to create the illusion of choice to users eager to gain access to the global internet, but these circumvention tools are sometimes deleted if they are deemed by the Chinese government to be too popular with consumers.

FILE PHOTO: The messenger app WeChat is seen next to its logo in this illustration picture taken Aug. 7, 2020.

Short-lived frenzy

Chinese users hailed their newfound ability to visit long banned websites before the app was removed last Saturday.

Several now banned articles introducing Tuber went viral Friday on China’s super app WeChat and seem to have contributed to Tuber’s overnight success.

Sporting a logo similar to that of YouTube, Tuber’s main page offered a feed of YouTube videos, while another tab allowed users go to Western websites banned in China.

A reporter at Chinese state media Global Times tweeted that the move is “good for China’s stability and it’s a great step for China’s opening up.”

PS5 Game File Sizes Revealed, And You Could Run Out Of Space Quickly

Start planning out space for your PS5 games on the system’s SSD now, because they are going to take up a lot of room. In fact, it might not be too long before you have to start deleting games if the file sizes Sony has revealed are anything to go by.

On the PlayStation Direct website, which lets you buy PlayStation games and accessories directly from Sony, Spider-Man: Miles Morales and Demon’s Souls both have their file sizes estimated. In the case of Spider-Man: Miles Morales, the standard version of the game takes up 50GB, while the Ultimate Edition, which packs in a copy of Spider-Man: Remastered, takes up 105GB. Demon’s Souls, meanwhile, is a full remake of the 2009 PS3 game and takes up about 66GB.

For comparison, From Software’s previous game, Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, takes up less than 13GB on PS4. The PS3 version of Demon’s Souls is less than 8GB.

With updates down the line, these file sizes could get even bigger. Games like Call of Duty: Modern Warfare have drawn some controversy this generation for ballooning file sizes of well over 100GB, and with higher-resolution textures and more detailed game worlds, that only looks to become more of a problem for PS5. The system’s 825GB capacity is lower than the PS4 Pro, and though it will support expansion cards to increase that storage space, those are expensive and likely out of many users’ budget range. Getting 2TB of storage could nearly double the cost of the system itself. When you have a library of games to purchase, as well, it’s a tough pill to swallow.

The PS5 is releasing on November 12 in two versions: a $499 standard console and a $399 digital edition. The systems are otherwise identical, so you won’t be losing out