Free Fire Max is not banned in India yet, but it could meet the same fate as Free Fire. Here’s why

Despite the countrywide ban on Free Fire, Free Fire Max is still available on Google Play Store in India.

The Ministry of Electronics and IT has recently banned 54 Chinese apps and games in India, including the popular battle royale game Free Fire. The government body claims that these apps pose a threat to the privacy and security of Indian citizens by transferring sensitive data to servers in foreign countries like China. Although Free Fire is unavailable on Google Play Store and App Store in India, another version of the game — Free Fire Max — is still available to download on Google Play Store. Here’s a quick look at why Free Fire Max isn’t banned in India yet and why it could meet the same fate as Free Fire soon:

Why Free Fire Max is not banned in India yet?

Neither Garena nor the Indian government has clarified why Free Fire Max is available on the Play Store, despite the countrywide ban. It’s currently unknown how long Free Fire Max will be available on the storefront. That being said, here are some of the possible reasons why Free Fire Max is still available:

Free Fire Max isn’t included in the list of banned apps

The list of 54 banned apps shared by various publications and Twitter accounts only mentions Free Fire and not Free Fire Max. It’s quite possible that only Free Fire is banned and not Free Fire Max. However, since the Indian government hasn’t released the official list, the status of Free Fire Max’s availability in the country cannot be confirmed.

Government authorities may have considered Free Fire and Free Fire Max as separate apps

It’s quite likely that the government could be considering Free Fire and Free Fire Max as separate games when the latter is pretty much the same as the latter with better graphics. However, it’s unclear how long this situation may persist. The game is made by the same publisher as Free Fire, i.e. Garena. So, the game may not stay on Play Store for long.

Why Free Fire Max may get banned in India soon?

The Indian government may ban Free Fire Max soon for the following reasons:

Free Fire and Free Fire Max have the same developer and publisher

As both games have the same dev and publisher, player data is most likely transferred to the same servers. As the government takes an issue with data of Indian players being transferred to servers in foreign companies, we can expect Free Fire Max to be fully banned soon. Garena and 111dots will need to store player data locally in India to ensure that the game never gets banned.

Free Fire Max removed from App Store

Another reason why Free Fire Max could get banned in India soon is that it has been removed from the Apple App Store. It is possible that Android may follow Apple’s footsteps and remove Free Fire Max from Google Play Store as well. Free Fire is also facing a lawsuit from Krafton for allegedly copying several aspects of PUBG, including the structure and feel of the game and the copyrighted airdrop feature.

Per Krafton, “Free Fire and Free Fire Max extensively copy numerous aspects of Battlegrounds, both individually and in combination, including Battlegrounds’ copyrighted unique game-opening “airdrop” feature, the game structure and play, the combination and selection of weapons, armour, and unique objects, locations, and the overall choice of colour schemes, materials, and textures.”

Cupertino-based firm Apple and its counterpart Google has also been named in the lawsuit for distributing these games on the App Store and Play Store.

Until then…

It seems like Free Fire Max will be available for download on Google Play Store. Free Fire users can use their IDs to log in to the Max version of the game, with the same progress and items from the regular version. This applies to Apple iPhone and iPad users who have Free Fire Max installed on their devices.