Whatsapp blocked in major parts of China

Other services of the company, including its social media site and image sharing app Instagram, are not available on the mainland.

It is reported that in mid-July, Chinese censors began blocking video and voice chats, and the distribution of photographs or other files using WhatsApp. But text messages would go through until these restrictions were lifted recently. WhatsApp encryption technology makes it hard for the government to closely monitor and restrict the cyberspace.

But in fact, WhatsApp App is already inaccessible by about 30 percent of China's population.

WhatsApp and its parent company have yet to comment, but this, again, shows China isn't softening its strict regulations anytime soon. It appears that it has been more than a week since WhatsApp services stopped in the country while it continued to work for some users.

China's Internet censorship has left big players like Facebook, Apple and Google out of the huge Chinese market with an audience of more than 700 million Internet users. China is tightening scrutiny over its internet arena in the run-up to the 19th Communist Party congress.

Other users in China noted that the disruptions would make it hard to work with clients overseas.

Since China blocked WhatsApp, users have been complaining about the disruption. Many said it would affect their business. WeChat, by contrast, gives personal data to Chinese authorities.

The 10 platforms include the popular messaging service WeChat, the Twitter-like Weibo, e-commerce giants Taobao and Jingdong, taxi-hailing service Didi and Baidu Map. This event is held once every five years and the congress selects the party's leadership which will, in turn, run China. As of Tuesday however, many users were still able to send messages successfully.

Users in the country have been hit with disruption to the app over the past few months which has seen them unable to send videos or photos.

Foreign networks such as Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook - as well as dozens of overseas media websites - have been blocked in China for years. Despite that, some services like Apple's FaceTime is still working that also has end-to-end encryption.

  • Carolyn Briggs