Report: iTunes iBooks, Movies Shut Down in China

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Apple's iBooks Store and iTunes Movies are now closed in China, according to reports.

The shutdown was ordered by the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT)—an executive branch under the State Council of the People's Republic of China, The New York Times reports. The Chinese did not offer an official explanation, but as the Times notes, it could be a sign that Apple—which has benefited from its cordial relationship with Beijing—will now face the same restrictions as its tech rivals in the region.

China is known to heavily censor broadcast, print, and online media, restricting access to foreign sites like Google, Facebook, and Twitter behind the Great Firewall of China. Late last month, an uncensored version of Google Search and Instagram became briefly available to Chinese Web users, a situation that was quickly reversed.

Still, the SAPPRFT's move comes as a surprise, considering that Apple's services only launched there in September.

"We hope to make books and movies available again to our customers in China as soon as possible," Apple told the Times.

Neither Apple nor the SAPPRFT immediately responded to PCMag's request for comment.

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