If you had told me a year ago that an app primarily used for children to upload videos of themselves doing funny dances would be the center of a political storm, I'm not sure I would have believed you. The Trump administration announced last month that it planned to ban TikTok from the United States unless its ownership was divested, and just before the ban was scheduled to take effect, a judge has blocked the move.

U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols granted a preliminary injunction from ByteDance (owner of TikTok) that prevents the previously-announced ban from taking effect. The Trump administration claims that TikTok has been collecting vast swaths of personal information that could potentially be used by China to conduct espionage (key word there is potentially). The ban would have prevented TikTok from being available in the United States on the Play Store, Apple App Store, and other platforms.

The ruling is only temporary, as TikTok works to finalize a deal with Oracle and Walmart to buy its US operations. The transaction is still vague, and mostly involves Oracle gaining a 12.5% stake in TikTok Global and Walmart holding a 7.5% stake. Oracle would also be required to become the cloud hosting provider for TikTok US, which is obviously entirely unrelated to Oracle's CEO's ties to President Trump.

Judge Nichols declined "at this time" to block additional restrictions by the Department of Commerce, which are still set to take effect on November 12th. The upcoming deadline will likely block TikTok from functioning in the United States, even for people with it already installed.

TikTok
TikTok
Developer: TikTok Pte. Ltd.
Price: To be announced