As India and China face-off fierce standoff in Galwan Valley in Ladakh, where at least 20 soldiers have lost their lives, Indians are fuming in anger. There's a heightened sense of anti-China sentiment in the country, with people boycotting Chinese products. Popular Chinese apps have also been on the receiving end of this criticism, which has given a boost to home-grown apps.
One such app that has managed to leverage the anti-China sentiment to its benefit is Mitron, which is a short video making app similar to TikTok. Mitron enjoyed early success in India with over 5 million downloads within a month - a huge chunk of its popularity came from the anti-TikTok sentiment. But the rising popularity hit a roadblock when series of controversies surrounding the app's origin and its founders made the headlines.
Mitron was first linked to Pakistan when a Pakistani software developing company called Qboxus revealed it provided the app's entire source code, its features, and the interface. Mitron, which was claimed to be "made in India," had a Pakistani origin. This didn't sit too well with Indian users, slowing down the app's growth.
Soon after, Google removed Mitron from Play Store for violating the "spam and minimum functionality" policy. But a week later, Mitron was back up on Google's app marketplace.
Anti-China sentiment fuels Mitron downloads
Even though the founders of the Mitron app, Shivank Agarwal and Anish Khandelwal, came forward to clear the controversies, the app's download pace was fuelled by anti-Chinese sentiment in India. Miron has now crossed 10 million downloads, half of which came in the last month alone.
This is a remarkable feat for a relatively new app, which is built on the same idea as TikTok to engage users through short engaging videos.