What you need to know
- Russia has passed a law banning the sale of devices that do not come pre-installed with Russian software.
- The new law will come into force in July 2020.
- It covers smartphones, computers, and televisions.
A report today has revealed that Russia has passed a law banning the sale of technology devices that do not come pre-installed with Russian software.
According to the BBC, the legislation will come into force in July 2020, and covers smartphones, computers and smart TVs. Backers of the legislation say it will help promote Russian technology, and make it easier for Russians to use the tech they buy.
Importantly, the law will not prohibit companies from including their own, normal software:
A co-author of the bill, Oleg Nikolayev, said:
Distributors and manufacturers in Russia have criticized the move, claiming that installing Russian-made software on some devices will be impossible and that many international companies may simply leave the market as a result. Perhaps more worryingly, concerns have also been raised that the Russian-made software may be used to spy on its users.
The report notes that the government is yet to compile a list of all devices affected. The list of software that requires pre-installation will also be determined by the government. There are no specifics yet, but as the law covers smartphones and computers, no doubt Apple, Google, Samsung, and HTC could all fall foul of the move, as well as computer manufacturers like Dell and Lenovo. Tim Cook may well have convinced President Trump to grant Apple relief from US tariffs in China, but he'll probably struggle to get out of this one...
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