I've validated it with the iOS 13.2 Beta, and it's official: Apple really did remove the Taiwan flag emoji 🇹🇼 from iOS for users with their region set to Hong Kong or Mainland China. This change appeared in 13.1.2, as reported by @krislc. https://www.hongkongfp.com/2019/10/05/taiwan-flag-emoji-disappears-latest-apple-iphone-keyboard/ …
We have previously seen Apple remove apps from the Chinese App Store, like VPNs, but we never saw OS changes. This emoji removal now joins the quiet SIM canary adoption. If you insert a Chinese carrier SIM, apps like TikTok & Apple News no longer function.
The most damning thing from Apple that we have seen, as they face this Trade War, is how they handled the Project Zero disclosure. People likely died as a direct result of that attack on iOS, & yet, they refused to acknowledge that, & deeply downplayed it. https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2019/09/a-message-about-ios-security/ …
The gravity of a market of 1.3B makes us all less free every single day. It will take us years to acknowledge that, and even longer to rebuild.
There’s a dark truth in this. A few years from now, I think we’ll look at this period through the same lens & record screech as the post-2016 and VoteLeave reconciliation, when the Arab Spring optimistic fog rescinded.
You can follow @_DanielSinclair.
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