Beginning July 1, all smartphones, computers and smart TVs sold in Russia will come with pre-installed Russian software, as per a law that President Vladimir Putin signed on December 2, Reuters reported. The law will reportedly help Russian IT firms compete with foreign companies, and consumers won’t have to download software on purchasing a new device.

The new legislation also says that the government will create a list of Russian apps that would need to be installed on different devices. As per the Reuters report, electronics retailers have resisted this law; they reportedly say that they had not been consulted.

Russia cracks down on free internet

  • In June, Russian authorities had ordered Tinder to comply with government requests to hand over messages and photos of its users in Russia
  • In May, Putin had signed a law that required internet service providers in Russia to unplug from foreign servers, and calls for the creation of a national domain system that would allow the country to stay online if it was ever cut off from the global internet,
  • In March, Putin had signed a set of bills that made it a crime to disrespect the state and spread fake news by amending existing information laws.