Blocked websites in China as at today, 7/7/2021
Around the world, people use WhatsApp to send messages to their friends, family, and groups. But not in China. You see, the Chinese government blocked WhatsApp back in 2017. Which means that the residents of China lost the possibility to use the app for video calls, messages, image sharing, and many other things.
If you’re visiting China and you want to stay in touch with WhatsApp users, you’ll need to get around this block. Doing so requires some careful consideration, but it’s not impossible.
If you’re ready to proceed with caution, read on! You’ll learn how certain kinds of specialized anonymity services can allow you to access WhatsApp in China.
How to access WhatsApp in China
The best and safest method to unblock WhatsApp in China is using a Virtual private network (VPN).
Compared to other anonymity tools, VPNs are the easiest and most popular way to access the uncensored Internet from China. With the right VPN provider, protocol, and client application, you’ll be chatting on WhatsApp from within China in no time.
Because the situation with GFW circumvention changes so rapidly, the exact way to unblock a given app does too. However, this kind of process of trial and error has worked in the past:
VPNs continue to provide access to websites blocked in China
VPNs continue to be the best way to get around the Great Firewall of China. Nonetheless, last year, many VPNs stopped working or their services were affected substantially.
Zoom is partially blocked in China
In August 2020, Zoom released a local version for users in China. The international version is blocked. Individual users can join meetings but cannot organize them. Premium users have to subscribe through the local partner to be able to create meetings.
WhatsApp and other popular messaging apps don’t work in China
Since September 2017, WhatsApp has been almost completely blocked in China. Currently, without using a VPN, you can’t send or receive voice messages, videos, images or any other type of files.
Text messages can sometimes get around the restrictions, but they can arrive hours late.
Other popular messaging apps, like Messenger, Telegram, Snapchat and Line, are also blocked.
Skype continues to work in China
In December 2017, the Skype app disappeared from the App Store and other app markets in China. Even so, Skype has never stopped working in China.
VPN apps for Apple are not blocked in China
Apps have not been blocked, but the App Store has blocked users located in China from downloading these apps, which means that you will not be able to download VPN apps or update them unless you have a VPN active on your phone (manually configured or by downloading the app in advance).
TikTok is blocked in China
Despite being owned by a Chinese company, TikTok is blocked in China, like other popular social media platforms. China has a local version of TikTok called Douyin.
Google maps is still blocked in China
Some news pointed to the possibility that China would ease up on the blocking of Google Maps for users in Mainland China. However, at the present moment, Google Maps is unavailable in China without a VPN.
Clubhouse has been blocked in China
Clubhouse, a rapidly growing social networking app based on voice chat, has been blocked in China since February 2021, only a few months after its release (May 2020).