Apple has made the move to comply with Chinese government policy, that demands domestic operators own foreign services' data centres so that data on Chinese citizens is stored within the country. Late previous year, Amazon Inc.'s Amazon Web Services sold sell assets of as much as 2 billion yuan in China to its partner Beijing Sinnet Technology Co.to help Sinnet Technology obtain a cloud services certificate needed to continue operating.
Apple will start informing its Chinese iCloud users from today, with data transferred and uploaded to the new database automatically.
Government media have been exerting increased pressure on Apple to operate in line with China's strict media regulations, or else be forced out of the market.
Apple has already notified customers based in China to examine the new terms and conditions and given those who do not want to use iCloud as operated by GCBD the option to terminate their account.
In that agreement, AWS explained to The Register, Beijing Sinnet took over the physical infrastructure of AWS's bit barns, but not the IP: "AWS continues to own the intellectual property for AWS Services worldwide".
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Last year, China implemented new cybersecurity rules which makes companies store all digital data within the country.
They apply to anyone with iCloud accounts registered in mainland China, according to Apple.
Those iCloud customers in mainland China who don't want to use iCloud operated by GCBD can delete their account before February 28. "Apple has strong data privacy and security protections in place and no backdoors will be created into any of our systems", the statement says.
Influential media subsequently launched an attack on the company and called for a boycott of Apple products. These facilities are used by companies to remotely store large amounts of data and host cloud computing services, which enable users to buy, lease or sell software and other digital resources online on demand, just like electricity from a power grid.
Apart from securing a data centre venture with the Guizhou provincial government, USA mobile chip supplier Qualcomm also signed a strategic cooperation with the government in 2016 to design and sell server chipsets in China. He added the firm had to comply with Chinese regulations requiring licenses for VPN sellers.